han·​dler | \ ˈhan(d)-lər How to pronounce handler (audio) , ˈhan-dᵊl-ər \

Definition of handler

1 : one that handles something
2a : a person in immediate physical charge of an animal especially : a person who exhibits dogs at shows or field trials
b : a person who trains or acts as second for a boxer
c : a manager of a political or public figure or campaign

Examples of handler in a Sentence

a dog handler and breeder a politician and his handlers
Recent Examples on the Web Hay is the only canine handler remaining on Indiana Task Force 1 who responded to Ground Zero. Sarah Nelson, The Indianapolis Star, 9 Sep. 2021 Sella was the Israeli military's U.S.-based handler for Pollard, a former Navy intelligence analyst who sold military secrets to Israel while working at the Pentagon in the 1980s. Compiled Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 2 Sep. 2021 As an officer Corner has been a K9 handler, field training officer, firearms instructor and a member of the SWAT team. Sue Kiesewetter, The Enquirer, 17 Aug. 2021 Stallings was the handler for a dog that latched onto the leg of tribal member Harris Redstar following a traffic stop in Lodge Grass, according to the complaint. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 30 July 2021 Randy Shaw, department manager and senior test lead, would be our handler for the day. Mark Synnott, Wired, 13 Apr. 2021 But in recent months, his fanboy Twitter accounts have dialed back, and his main image handler has shopped him carefully to some national news outlets, trying to stress his self-defense and the image of a boy-next-door. jsonline.com, 19 Aug. 2021 Melvin Berry was hired by Tesla as a materials handler in 2015, but quit only 17 months later after being harassed on the job, according to court documents. Khristopher J. Brooks, CBS News, 6 Aug. 2021 Needs to clean up his ball skills, both as a handler and pass catcher. USA TODAY, 28 Apr. 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of handler was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near handler

handle oneself



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Last Updated

17 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Handler.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/handler. Accessed 24 Sep. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of handler

: a person who trains or controls an animal
: a person who carries or handles something
: a person who guides, helps, or manages a political or public figure

More from Merriam-Webster on handler

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for handler

Nglish: Translation of handler for Spanish Speakers


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