Definition of puppy in US English:



  • 1A young dog.

    • ‘Lily the mongrel puppy was one of the first pooches to go online to promote a stray dogs website in North Yorkshire.’
    • ‘We have a young puppy that, as most puppies do, tends to go to the bathroom all over the place, and my wife gets very frustrated by this.’
    • ‘Gates are optional, but if you have a puppy or a young dog, you will probably find them useful.’
    • ‘In her favour she's young, still a puppy in many ways, and an outdoor dog more than happy to run about in the rain for hours on end, so her constitution is strong.’
    • ‘Her name, as we found out, was Luna, and she was the third youngest out of four puppies.’
    • ‘Young puppies enjoy short bouts of leading, from five to ten minutes, if they have been properly acclimated to the leash.’
    • ‘Both horses and hounds had central heating by flues and the dog kennel alone measured 405 feet long with numerous separate compartments for bitches, puppies and dogs.’
    • ‘He lies in the nest for tonight, taken from a stray mutt and her mongrel puppies.’
    • ‘Sue Chapman, who has trained guide dog puppies for ten years and is currently training her tenth puppy, said that using the buses would be an invaluable part of their training.’
    • ‘Miss Waine, who has been in the job for a year, said she had come across cruelty cases before but never one involving such a young puppy.’
    • ‘Remember, very young puppies should not attempt long walks until they are at least 6 months old.’
    • ‘He also became increasingly attached to his dogs, a German shepherd bitch and her five puppies, which lived in one of the bunker's bathrooms.’
    • ‘Over the next few weeks, my mom had to take special care of Duchess, since she was such a young, tiny puppy.’
    • ‘National charity, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People, which has a training centre at Cliffe, near Selby, is appealing for volunteers to take in puppies and young dogs for anything up to six weeks.’
    • ‘When recently I asked an Indonesian acquaintance for advice on the feeding habits of young puppies, the reply I got was not one I had expected.’
    • ‘The deceased and his wife had a young puppy whose barking on the morning of the killing had irritated the claimant.’
    • ‘There are dogs and bitches, puppies, adolescents - lots of those - and old, sad ones who move only very slowly.’
    • ‘Now, hundreds of puppies too young and sometimes too sick are being smuggled across Mexico's border right here to the United States.’
    • ‘The Big Puppy Day out was held on Tuesday for puppy walkers and their 20 guide dog puppies.’
    • ‘Not long after, Gerasim finds a young puppy drowning in a muddy creek.’
    hound, canine, mongrel, cur, tyke
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1dated A conceited or arrogant young man.
      ‘you ungrateful puppy!’
    2. 1.2North American informal A person or thing of a specified kind.
      ‘patient bargain hunters can often find these puppies gathering dust at garage sales’


Late 15th century (denoting a lapdog): perhaps from Old French poupee ‘doll, plaything’; compare with puppet, synonymous with dialect puppy (as in puppy-show ‘puppet show’).