put (an animal) off the/someone's scent

idiom

Definition of put (an animal) off the/someone's scent

: to cause (an animal) to lose the smell of an animal or person it has been following by sensing the animal's or person's smell
  • We swam across the stream in order to put the dog off our scent.
often used figuratively
  • He was being investigated by federal officials but he somehow managed to put them off the/his scent.

Word by Word Definitions

put play
  1. : to place in a specified position or relationship : lay

  2. : to move in a specified direction

  3. : to send (something, such as a weapon or missile) into or through something : thrust

  1. : a throw made with an overhand pushing motion

  2. : an option to sell a specified amount of a security (such as a stock) or commodity (such as wheat) at a fixed price at or within a specified time — compare call 3d

  1. : being in place : fixed, set

animal play
  1. : any of a kingdom (Animalia) of living things including many-celled organisms and often many of the single-celled ones (such as protozoans) that typically differ from plants in having cells without cellulose walls, in lacking chlorophyll and the capacity for photosynthesis, in requiring more complex food materials (such as proteins), in being organized to a greater degree of complexity, and in having the capacity for spontaneous movement and rapid motor responses to stimulation

  2. : one of the lower animals (see 3lower 3) as distinguished from human beings

  3. : mammal

  1. : of, relating to, resembling, or derived from animals

  2. : of or relating to the physical or sentient as contrasted with the intellectual or rational

  3. : sensual, fleshly

off play
  1. : from a place or position

  2. : at a distance in space or time

  3. : from a course : aside

  1. used as a function word to indicate physical separation or distance from a position of rest, attachment, or union

  2. : to seaward of

  3. : from the possession or charge of

  1. : seaward

  2. : right

  3. : more removed or distant

  1. : to go away : depart

  2. : kill, murder

  1. : competition : contest

someone play
  1. : some person : somebody

scent play
  1. : effluvia from a substance that affect the sense of smell: such as

  2. : an odor left by an animal on a surface passed over

  3. : a characteristic or particular odor

  1. : to perceive by the olfactory organs : smell

  2. : to get or have an inkling of

  3. : to imbue or fill with odor


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