Definition of canine in English:



  • 1Relating to or resembling a dog or dogs.

    ‘canine behavioural problems’
    • ‘At the nearby Scott Base, seals are infected with canine distemper, a virus passed to them by researchers' dogs.’
    • ‘There's no need for participating animals to be specially skilled - but if you think you know a canine genius or feline mastermind, now's the time to prove it.’
    • ‘Vets are advising owners of unvaccinated puppies in particular to be on their guard for the parvo virus, or canine distemper, which can kill dogs in a matter of days.’
    • ‘Hence canine genetic sequences will prove useful for research on, among other things, cancer and autoimmune disorders.’
    • ‘In science, the best one can do is observe the behavior of dogs in natural and controlled settings, and then, on that basis, make testable inferences about canine cognition.’
    • ‘Initially the animals may appear healthy, but most die within days, he said, often from canine illnesses like parvo, distemper, and giardia.’
    • ‘Scientists have completed a rough sketch of the canine genome.’
    • ‘Is a canine version of cognitive behavioural therapy the answer?’
    • ‘They include dog massage, canine anatomy, behavioural science and dog psychology.’
    • ‘Llamas instinctively guard against canine attacks, possibly because their natural herd instincts have wired them to chase off predators.’
    • ‘Rhoda, a racing greyhound, contracted canine influenza in Florida in 2003.’
    • ‘A canine team can also examine 400 to 500 packages in about 30 minutes, a fraction of the time a human inspection would consume.’
    • ‘More than 100 canine teams are trained each year at the facility.’
    • ‘Former banker Neil Kittredge, from Alverstoke, is one of the UK's new breed of canine behaviour consultants.’
    • ‘To counter the image, advisors suggested he get a canine companion.’
    • ‘Nearly 80 percent of dogs exposed to the virus contract only a mild form of the disease, which mimics kennel cough - a type of canine bronchitis that is rarely serious.’
    • ‘But therein might lie one secret of canine intelligence.’
    • ‘Some of the extra curricular activities include search and rescue, first aid for dogs, as well as lectures on wolf behavior, doggie massage, and canine nutrition.’
    • ‘The main cause for the decline of foxes on Santa Catalina Island is the rapid spread of canine distemper, which is transmitted by dogs.’
    • ‘Though researchers are busy working on vaccines for plague and canine distemper, such tools are still a long way off.’
    1. 1.1Zoology Relating to animals of the dog family.
      ‘related canine species’
      • ‘Shawn went on to say that he always envied the animals of the canine family for having this ability.’
      • ‘It will then be compared to small amounts of sequence from 10 to 20 other breeds, including the beagle, to study genetic variation within the canine species.’
      • ‘The bands mark several genes that were mapped in both the human and the canine species.’
      • ‘The swift fox is a member of the canine family and can be distinguished from other foxes by its small size (the size of a house cat), the black spot on each side of its nose, and its tipped black tail.’
      • ‘Normal canine prostate was used as the animal model.’


  • 1A dog.

    ‘the majority agreed with neutering stray canines’
    • ‘They're search-and-rescue dogs - working canines from a wide mix of breeds.’
    • ‘But contrary to popular belief, he said, the canines don't devour large amounts of garbage or vast numbers of family pets.’
    • ‘Late last January, several chemical-detection canines began work in the field alongside their handlers.’
    • ‘Pedigree or mongrel, the canines dislike it when their owners show affection for other dogs.’
    • ‘Scientists have created eerie zombie dogs, reanimating the canines after several hours of clinical death in attempts to develop suspended animation for humans.’
    • ‘If Scroffles the mangy mutt could turn into the beautiful Sam, then there really is hope for all the stray canines.’
    • ‘At Lackland, canines are also trained for drug detection.’
    • ‘The chief has puffed eyes and dark under-eye circles, thanks to ceaseless barking by stray canines in the vicinity of the Thackeray residence.’
    • ‘The title Wolf alludes to Wolfgang as well as to feral canines: the dog pack is a counterpart to the human pack.’
    • ‘The digital dog collar allows dog owners to record the activity of their canines and to monitor when and where their ‘pals’ are walking.’
    • ‘From dawn until dusk, there are dozens of things for humans and canines to do together: sports, games, lectures, contests, and crafts.’
    • ‘Among these gainfully employed canines, there's a range of occupations, from seeing-eye and guard dogs to sheep herders and hunting dogs.’
    • ‘As the name suggests, these canines hunt by sight rather than scent.’
    • ‘This case illustrates that infection with C canimorsus may be seen after even casual exposure to a pet canine, with ominous results.’
    • ‘Unveiling plans to rid the city of stray canines, the Governor has urged city residents to eat more dog meat.’
    • ‘It's a mongrel canine bred to kill rats and to keep foxes trapped in their lairs until the hounds arrive for the kill.’
    • ‘The canines' handlers sit nearby to help facilitate the interaction.’
    • ‘Generations of East Texans had hunted deer with dogs, depending on the howling canines to roust deer from the region's thickets.’
    • ‘These highly trained canines also make recovery efforts go faster.’
    • ‘As every dog-lover knows, canines can sense a meal a mile away.’
    hound, canine, mongrel, cur, tyke
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Zoology An animal of the dog family.
      • ‘Ulcers developed in rats and canines when 150 mm Hg pressure was applied for nine hours or 500 mm Hg pressure was applied for two hours.’
      • ‘No, it was not a dog's head but probably of one of the wild canines; a wolf or perhaps a jackal.’
      • ‘Like vampires, they had sharp teeth of all canines, meant for ripping and tearing, but unlike the vampires, they had two fangs that curved down over their lower lips.’
      • ‘The rust-colored canine, closely related to the gray wolf, lives in small, social packs that meet three times a day and occupy territories that span just a few miles.’
      • ‘The owls were picked from the birds of prey, wolves from canines, dolphins from sea mammals.’
      • ‘The canines are good swimmers, and they have even colonized offshore islands, such as the Elizabeth Islands of Massachusetts.’
  • 2A pointed tooth between the incisors and premolars of a mammal, often greatly enlarged in carnivores.

    ‘most primates use their canine teeth for fighting’
    • ‘As well as having large canines for dealing with bigger prey, their cheek teeth are serrated, which enables them to strain krill from the water.’
    • ‘Our teeth include incisors and canines designed for tearing flesh.’
    • ‘Peramelemorphs have well-developed canines, 3 upper and 3 lower premolars, and 4 upper and 4 lower molars.’
    • ‘The canines have a sharp bend and fit into a groove on an expanded process on the lower jaw: a feature seen in other sabertooths but not in Smilodon.’
    • ‘Many wrasses are specialized and voracious feeders, as reflected by the highly variable skull and body shape, modified pharyngeal jaw, and prominent canines.’
    • ‘As in all rodents, one upper and one lower incisor are always found on each side of the jaw, and canines are always absent.’
    • ‘The canines all appear within one day after birth.’
    • ‘Each jaw has four incisors, two canines, and four molars.’
    • ‘These animals, the equivalent of the sabre-toothed cat of the Cenozoic era, used their enormous canines to bring down the ox - sized pareiasaurs.’
    • ‘Unlike the large cats that have two enlarged canines, marsupial lions had enlarged incisors that were used to stab prey.’
    • ‘As in rodents, canines are absent and a large space separates the incisors and the first cheek tooth.’
    • ‘The upper canines grow out and backward into large, curved tusks; wear between the upper and lower canines produces sharp edges.’
    • ‘The labial area of incisors was calculated from these measures as an approximating rectangle, and the labial area of canines as an approximating right triangle.’
    • ‘On the left side, the sockets from the first and second incisors, the canine, and the two premolars are visible.’
    • ‘The canines, which are present in both upper and lower jaws, are medium-sized and hooked.’
    • ‘Armadillos lack canines, and most have no incisors.’
    • ‘Perhaps the most interesting feature of the teeth is the marked wear on the lingual surfaces of the canines and incisors.’
    • ‘The presence of extremely large upper canines in an herbivorous kangaroo is a unexpected example of evolutionary convergence with Tertiary and even extant ungulates.’
    • ‘Behind the canines are the premolars, or bicuspids.’
    • ‘In Haptodus the canines are not sharply set off from the other dentition.’


Late Middle English (in canine): from French, from Latin caninus, from canis dog.