Meaning of PET in English


I. pet 1 /pet/ BrE AmE noun

[ Date: 1500-1600 ; Origin: Perhaps from petty 'small' ]

1 . [countable] an animal such as a cat or a dog which you keep and care for at home:

They have two pets - a cat and a dog.

We weren't allowed to keep pets at school.

Rabbits make good pets.

pet rabbit/bird etc

He got bitten by his pet rabbit.

pet food

a pet shop

2 . British English spoken used when speaking to someone you like or love:

Don’t cry, pet.


• • •


■ verbs

▪ have a pet

Do you have any pets?

▪ keep a pet (=have one in your home)

Tenants aren’t allowed to keep pets.


Many species of parrot can be kept as pets.

▪ make good/ideal etc pets (=be good/very good as pets)

Do rabbits make good pets?


▪ a family pet

These dogs make an ideal family pet.

▪ a domestic/household pet

Cats and other domestic pets give their owners a lot of pleasure.

▪ an exotic pet (=from a foreign country and not seen or found very often)

Often the owners do not know how to care for these exotic pets.

■ pet + NOUN

▪ a pet dog/cat/rabbit etc

I used to have a pet rabbit when I was young.

▪ pet food

cans of pet food

▪ a pet shop

Your local pet shop will have a variety of different collars.

▪ a pet owner

During hot summer days, pet owners should keep their pet indoors.

II. pet 2 BrE AmE verb ( past tense and past participle petted , present participle petting ) [transitive]

to touch and move your hand gently over someone, especially an animal or a child ⇨ stroke :

Our cat loves being petted.

⇨ ↑ petting

• • •


■ touch somebody gently or lovingly

▪ stroke to move your hand gently over something, especially in a loving way:

She stroked the child’s hair.


Our cat won’t let people stroke him.

▪ pat to touch an animal or child lightly several times, with your hand flat:

He knelt down to pat the dog.


She patted the little boy’s head.

▪ pet to touch and move your hand gently over someone, especially an animal or child:

The goats, pigs, sheep, and cows here allow you to pet them.

▪ caress /kəˈres/ to gently touch a part of someone’s body in a loving way:

a mother caressing her child


She caressed his cheek.

▪ fondle to touch a part of someone’s body in a loving or sexual way – use this especially about touching someone in a sexual way that is not wanted:

He tried to fondle her and she immediately pulled away from him.

III. pet 3 BrE AmE adjective

1 . pet project/theory/subject a plan, idea, or subject that you particularly like or are interested in

2 . pet hate British English , pet peeve American English something that you strongly dislike because it always annoys you:

TV game shows are one of my pet hates.

⇨ ↑ pet name

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.