vet

noun
\ ˈvet \

Definition of vet 

(Entry 1 of 3)

Definition of vet (Entry 2 of 3)

vet

verb
vetted; vetting

Definition of vet (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to evaluate for possible approval or acceptance vet the candidates for a position
b : to subject to usually expert appraisal or correction vet a manuscript
2a : to provide veterinary care for (an animal) or medical care for (a person)
b : to subject (a person or animal) to a physical examination or checkup

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Other Words from vet

Verb

vetter noun

A Brief History of the Verb Vet

Verb

When we vet a statement for accuracy or vet a candidate for a position, what are we doing, literally? Does the verb have something to do with veteran "a person with long experience," perhaps indicating that the thing or person vetted is proved to be tried and true?

Interestingly, the word is not related to veteran at all, but rather to veterinarian "an animal doctor." That noun was shortened to vet by the mid-19th century and, within decades, gave rise to a verb vet meaning "to subject (an animal) to medical examination." The verb was soon applied to human beings as well, broadening in sense to "to perform a medical checkup on." By the early 20th century, this word took on the figurative meaning that is now most familiar: "to subject a person or thing to scrutiny; to examine for flaws."

Examples of vet in a Sentence

Noun

I have to take my dog to the vet.

Verb

They vetted her thoroughly before offering her the job. The book was vetted by several different editors. He's already vetted the plan, so we can start right away.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Toxins in the parts below the dirt can cause vomiting with or without blood and potentially low blood pressure — necessitating a trip to the vet. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "5 Holiday Plants That Are Way More Toxic Than Poinsettias to Cats and Dogs," 14 Dec. 2018 At the end of episode five, a present-day Mr. Robinson (a vet who served with Jack) gives Kevin a stack full of letters and a photo of Jack with the woman wearing his necklace. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'This Is Us' Fans Have Intense Theories About the Woman Wearing Jack’s Necklace in Episode 5," 24 Oct. 2018 In an age of plentiful unicorns, there seems to be only one (Convoy) founded by Amazon vets near the mothership. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Facebook has a growing morale problem," 15 Nov. 2018 If your furry friend shows any of these symptoms, they should be taken to the vet immediately to be given medical treatment. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "The Dog Flu Is Spreading Across the Country for the First Time In Years," 16 Aug. 2018 The American Veterinary Medical Association says canine devocalization should only be performed by a qualified, licensed vet as a last resort to euthanasia after behavior modification fails to stop excessive barking. Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "Breeder 'debarked' dogs by shoving a pipe down their throats, Penn. authorities say," 30 May 2018 Tickets are $20; a limited number of free tickets will be offered to vets on a first come, first served basis. Sandy Guerra-cline, star-telegram, "The top 10 list: Sip into spring in Arlington, or have a picnic in Fort Worth | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 3 May 2018 By then Kathryn had been to the vet several times and learned the only solution for her 13-year-old cat wasn’t medical, but humane. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: My cat thinks he's a dog but he's actually a lifesaver," 29 Apr. 2018 Government funded agencies, most notably the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, also track some aspects of gun violence, but their data takes longer to vet and is not up to date. Kristina Davis, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Gun violence ticking up, but chances of being victim of mass shooting still minuscle," 24 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Viewed warily by his party’s conservative base, Trump has been keen to note that all of his picks have been vetted by conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society. Catherine Lucey, Washington Post, "Trump mulls Supreme Court choice from 2 or 3 candidates," 7 July 2018 Viewed warily by his party's conservative base, Trump has been keen to note that all of his picks have been vetted by conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society. Catherine Lucey, Zeke Miller And Ken Thomas, Houston Chronicle, "Trump weighs 2 or 3 candidates for court, to meet with Pence," 6 July 2018 Council members balked at voting on the proposal earlier this week, saying it was given to them at the last minute, without time to vet the contract or ask questions. Jenna Carlesso, Courant Community, "Hartford Council Greenlights Purchase Of Body-Worn Cameras For Police," 29 June 2018 Tepper is a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers and already has been vetted and approved. Mark Maske, chicagotribune.com, "NFL owners set to gather, and a national anthem policy is atop their to-do list," 22 May 2018 It was considered a mere formality, given that Tepper previously had been vetted and approved as a minority partner in the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Washington Post, NOLA.com, "NFL owners approve sale of Panthers from Jerry Richardson to David Tepper," 22 May 2018 Holsman said Neely’s amendment was struck this week, in part, because Neely’s previous bill had never been vetted in the Senate. Tessa Weinberg, kansascity, "Missouri lawmakers let medical marijuana die in last days of session. Next up: voters | The Kansas City Star," 18 May 2018 Meghan Lehman said police visited the Michigan Humane Society's Westland location this morning and found a new cat that has been vetted and cleared for adoption. Aleanna Siacon, Detroit Free Press, "Troy to swear in replacement police cat after 1st falls ill," 11 May 2018 In November, Oakley seemed like the frontrunner for the stadium, raising concerns among some residents there that the site hadn't been properly vetted. Sharon Coolidge, Cincinnati.com, "FC Cincinnati stadium can work in Oakley with expanded intersections, team-funded study says," 5 Mar. 2018

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

Noun

1848, in the meaning defined above

Adjective or noun

1848, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1875, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

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Statistics for vet

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vet

The first known use of vet was in 1848

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More Definitions for vet

vet

verb

English Language Learners Definition of vet

: to investigate (someone) thoroughly to see if they should be approved or accepted for a job

: to check (something) carefully to make sure it is acceptable

vet

noun
\ ˈvet \

Kids Definition of vet

 (Entry 1 of 2)

vet

noun

Kids Definition of vet (Entry 2 of 2)

vet

noun
\ ˈvet \

Medical Definition of vet 

(Entry 1 of 2)

vetted; vetting

Medical Definition of vet (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to provide veterinary care for (an animal) or medical care for (a person)
2 : to subject (a person or animal) to a physical examination or checkup

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More from Merriam-Webster on vet

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vet

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vet

Spanish Central: Translation of vet

Nglish: Translation of vet for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vet for Arabic Speakers

Comments on vet

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