canine

noun
ca·​nine | \ˈkā-ˌnīn, British also ˈka-\

Definition of canine 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 [ Middle English, from Latin (dens) caninus canine tooth ] : a conical pointed tooth especially : one situated between the lateral incisor and the first premolar — see tooth illustration

2 : dog sense 1a broadly : canid

canine

adjective

Definition of canine (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of or resembling that of a dog canine loyalty

2 : of or relating to dogs or to the family (Canidae) including the canids canine diseases

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Synonyms for canine

Synonyms: Noun

dog, doggy (or doggie), hound, pooch, tyke (also tike)

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Did You Know?

Dogs are prized for their talents and intelligence but aren't always given credit for their independence. Instead, tales of canine devotion and attachment are legendary; the old Lassie and Rin-Tin-Tin television series featured at least one heroic act of devotion per show. So we often hear people described as having "doglike devotion" or "doglike loyalty". But canine itself, unlike doglike, usually refers to four-legged creatures. Canine is not only an adjective but also a noun. Dogs and their relatives in the Canidae family—the wolves, jackals, foxes, and coyotes—are often called canines. And so are those two slightly pointed teeth a bit to the right and left of your front teeth.

Examples of canine in a Sentence

Noun

in the minds of some, the winner of this prestigious dog show has a fair claim to the title of King of the Canines

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In addition to providing care for military dogs injured in combat, the facility provides worldwide referral services and consultation for 4,000 more canines that belong to other federal government agencies and DOD military working dog programs. Vincent T. Davis, San Antonio Express-News, "One-of-a-kind hospital in San Antonio treats military dogs injured in line of duty," 28 June 2018 Dog sharing or going to a dog day care is ideal for canines that have separation anxiety, Sackman said. Rene Wisely, Detroit Free Press, "Is dog sharing the new way to keep dogs, owners together?," 8 June 2018 Coyotes have been known to advance on, growl at or surround dog walkers and their pets, a pattern of aggression that is natural for the wild canines during pupping season, which begins in the spring and continues through the summer. Peter Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, "Coyote alert: SF is home to seven new pups in the Presidio," 4 June 2018 There will be treats for canines while humans can enjoy $5 foot-long chili-cheese dogs and $8 Salty Dog slushies made with gin, grapefruit juice, rose wine, salt and lime juice. Samantha Nelson, RedEye Chicago, "Oktoberfest in Chicago: 14 spots with celebrations, steins and sausages," 18 Sep. 2017 At Moment apartments near Streeterville, where a grooming spa goes by the name the Wagging Tale, the building recently installed artificial grass designed for canines near a pre-existing dog run. Alison Bowen, chicagotribune.com, "'Yappy Hours' are now a thing. Rental buildings are ramping up pet perks," 12 July 2017 Boland’s hypothesis is that the culprit in canines is exposure to outdoor air pollution — fine air particulates, including dust and pollen — early in a puppy’s development. Stacey Burling, Philly.com, "Penn study: Summer puppies more prone to heart disease," 21 May 2018 But this remarkable hour was The Handmaid’s Tale’s first foray into a Call of the Wild adventure story, canines and all. refinery29.com, "The Handmaid's Tale Season 2, Episode 11 Recap: The Wolf Is A Metaphor," 27 June 2018 Visitors could enter their canines for $15 to race on a makeshift outdoor racetrack while German food and drinks were available for purchase. Daily Pilot Staff, latimes.com, "Racing dogs draw a crowd in Huntington Beach," 25 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

It's been a hard year for fans of the Queen's canine companions. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Queen Elizabeth's Last Corgi Has Died," 26 Oct. 2018 The sturdy but lightweight canine quarters are constructed of paulownia wood, named after Queen Anna Pavlovna of Russia (1795-1865). Catherine Romano, WSJ, "5 Pet Homes That Humans Will Envy," 26 Oct. 2018 The canine unit first appeared in the parade in 2008. Paulina Dedaj, Fox News, "Chile military parade offers a showcase for ... puppies?," 20 Sep. 2018 The police department’s violent crime, air and canine units responded to the scene. Christina Tkacik, baltimoresun.com, "1 injured in Essex shooting; Baltimore County police looking for suspects," 30 Apr. 2018 The donations were handled by the MPDK9 Foundation, a nonprofit organization that raises money to support the department's canine unit. Ashley Luthern, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee Police Department's K9 unit gets 2 new recruits, Brewer and Rocker," 5 Apr. 2018 The city of San Francisco and the province of Ontario, Canada, are the two latest areas where canine flu is making an appearance. Kim Campbell Thornton, sacbee, "Dogs can get the flu – but can’t share it with humans | The Sacramento Bee," 31 Jan. 2018 Gary Hay is a canine handler with Indiana's task force. Holly Hays, Indianapolis Star, "Responders struggle with lingering effects of Sept. 11," 11 Sep. 2016 The canine tale is scheduled to screen at 8 p.m. Saturday, July 14, on the northeast lawn of downtown’s Lake Eola Park. Anne Dunlap, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Free movie screening of 'Isle of Dogs' at Lake Eola Park," 13 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'canine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of canine

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for canine

Adjective

Latin caninus, from canis dog — more at hound

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Learn More about canine

Statistics for canine

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for canine

The first known use of canine was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for canine

canine

noun

English Language Learners Definition of canine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a dog

: a pointed tooth

canine

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of canine (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to dogs

canine

noun
ca·​nine | \ˈkā-ˌnīn \

Kids Definition of canine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a pointed tooth next to the incisors

2 : a domestic dog or a related animal (as a wolf or fox)

canine

adjective

Kids Definition of canine (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : of or relating to the domestic dog or a related animal canine behavior

2 : like or typical of a dog canine loyalty

canine

noun
ca·​nine | \ˈkā-ˌnīn, British also ˈkan-ˌīn\

Medical Definition of canine 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a conical pointed tooth especially : one situated between the lateral incisor and the first premolar

2 : any member of the family Canidae : dog

canine

adjective

Medical Definition of canine (Entry 2 of 2)

: of or relating to dogs or to the family Canidae

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Comments on canine

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