sniff·er | \ˈsni-fər \

Definition of sniffer 

1 : one that sniffs: such as

a : someone who sniffs a drug or other substance in order to become intoxicated a cocaine/glue sniffer

b or less commonly sniffer dog : a dog that is trained to recognize and follow scents especially for the purpose of locating people or contraband (such as illicit drugs and explosives)

2 informal : nose Use your sniffer to detect unattractive or unhealthy odors.— Susan DeBow

Examples of sniffer in a Sentence

Sniffers were brought in to search bags at the airport.

Recent Examples on the Web

A month later, officers came back with sniffer dogs and AK-47 rifles and carted away 51 people; 18 were convicted. Vidhi Doshi, Washington Post, "138 people killed in 2 months in Bangladesh police crackdown on drug dealers," 12 July 2018 Getting selected to join such an elite team of sniffers is no small feat. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "It’s Pooches vs. Poachers in the Fight Against Wildlife Smugglers," 22 June 2018 In South Africa, plans are underway to build a rehabilitation center for sick or rescued pangolins as well as deploy sniffer dogs specially trained to detect the scales’ pungent aroma. Washington Post, "In South Africa, plans for a refuge for pangolins in peril," 16 June 2018 Emergency personnel with sniffer dogs searched for signs of life amid the wreckage of concrete slabs and twisted metal after the 950-ton bridge crushed vehicles on one of the busiest roads in South Florida. Rebecca Hazen, Houston Chronicle, "West University Place conducts drainage study," 7 July 2018 However, there is a very good reason for blocking off one's sniffer, a sign near the booth explained, noting that most of what people consider to be taste is actually aroma, or smell. Barbara Henry,, "No lack of sugar-sweet fun at fair's theme building," 8 June 2018 Officers searched cars, trucks, boats and containers, sometimes using sniffer dogs and X-ray scanners. Washington Post, "Giant crackdown against wildlife crime in 92 countries," 20 June 2018 In addition to beginning bag checks in February, the Denver Center for the Performing Arts added magnetometers and occasionally employs sniffer dogs. David Lyman,, "Ticket? Check. Show up? Check. Aronoff confronts real-world concerns? Bag check.," 6 June 2018 One is a packet sniffer for collecting traffic that passes through the device. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Hackers infect 500,000 consumer routers all over the world with malware," 23 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sniffer.' 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 sniffer

1864, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for sniffer

The first known use of sniffer was in 1864

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English Language Learners Definition of sniffer

: someone who sniffs a drug or other substance in order to become intoxicated

: a dog that is trained to find people, illegal drugs, explosives, etc., by recognizing and following scents

More from Merriam-Webster on sniffer

Nglish: Translation of sniffer for Spanish Speakers

Comments on sniffer

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a state of commotion or excitement

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