pet Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo
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Meaning of “pet” in the English Dictionary

"pet" in British English

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petnoun [C]

uk   /pet/  us   /pet/
  • pet noun [C] (ANIMAL)

A1 an animal that is kept in the home as a companion and treated kindly: They have several pets - a dog, two rabbits, and a guinea pig. a pet snake

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  • pet noun [C] (PERSON)

be sb's pet disapproving
to be the person that someone in authority likes best and treats better than anyone else: The other children hated her because she was the teacher's pet.
informal approving a kind person who is easy to like: He's always sending me flowers - he's a real pet!
UK informal a friendly way of talking to someone, especially a woman or a child: Thank you, pet.

petverb

uk   /pet/  us   /pet/ (-tt-)
[T] If you pet an animal, child, etc., you touch it, him, or her gently and kindly with your hands: Our dog loves to be petted and tickled behind the ears.
[I] informal If two people are petting, they are kissing and touching each other in a sexual way.
See also

petadjective

uk   /pet/  us   /pet/
(Definition of pet from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"pet" in American English

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petnoun [C]

 us   /pet/
  • pet noun [C] (ANIMAL)

an animal that is kept in the home as a companion and treated affectionately: She has several interesting pets, including a couple of snakes.

petadjective [not gradable]

 us   /pet/
especially liked or personally important: The legislation will face strong opposition from senators whose pet projects would be cut back.

petverb [I/T]

 us   /pet/ (-tt-)
to touch an animal or person gently and affectionately with the hands: [T] Our dog loves to be petted and tickled behind the ears.
(Definition of pet from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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