Words Only Dog People Know

10 Words Only Dog People Know

When you love a dog, you need a whole new vocabulary. The Oxford English Dictionary, even unabridged, does not have enough words to describe things dog people know well.

Here are just a few words I’ve learned to better describe living with dogs.

10 Words Only Dog People Know

How many of these words do you need in your daily vocabulary?

Furwhumpf – The massive blizzard of fur and dander that floats in the air when you shake out a comforter or blanket.

Bdonk – The sound every dog person hears in her head when a big Labrador retriever walks by slowing swinging his powerful, otter tail.

A big Labrador retriever on a walk.

Bdonk. Bdonk. Bdonk.

Vulturing – The stooped shoulders and glaring eyes a dog takes on when she’s tired of having her picture taken.

Smashjoy – The horrible sound of plastic food toys crashing into furniture and skidding into wood trim that you can’t bear to stop because it makes your dog so happy.

Bribebeg – When your dog refuses to do what you ask him to do because he knows if he holds out long enough you’ll eventually try to bribe him with a cookie.

Honey the golden retriever looks like a vulture.

You call it vulturing. I call it “get the darn camera out of my face and let’s go for ice cream.”

Pupivents – The cooling holes left in your underwear by your teething puppy.

HDSP – The unspoken communication by which a dog and husband conspire to steal the sheets and blankets from the person in the family most likely to get cold.

Pupody – The tune you sing to your dog after substituting the words you like better. Example, “Please Walk Me Now” being sung to the melody of Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now.”

Smatching – Buying clothes that match your dog’s fur so people can’t tell you’re actually covered in dog hair.

Plove – The strong bond you and your dog have for each other that keeps you from needing words to share how much you love each other.

Golden retriever on a sail boat.

Honey: I plove you. Pam: I plove you too, Honey.

Your Turn: If someone wrote a dictionary for dog lovers, which words would you suggest adding?


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photo credit: Labrador retriever: jespahjoy via photopin cc. Click image to learn more about the photographer.

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  1. In my agility world, vulturing is the posture a Border Collie takes at the start line as it tries to creep forward toward the first jump, but still look like it is maintaining its stay.

    I definitely sing/make-up a lot of pupodies! And my dogs are masters of the Bribebeg!

    In the Corgi Nation, there is the term Frap…as in “Man, the corgis really had a good frap just now, hopefully they will be tired out.” Frap stands for Frantic Random Acts of Play. It is a style of spontaneous and wild play seen in Corgis. It is a joy to watch!

    Closer to home, we have the term “happy-roll” used to describe the contented roll, be it on the carpet or in the grass, following a good meal, chew-bone, or a soak in the warm sun. The happy-roll is accompanied by all sorts of silly grunts.

    • When you talked about the border collie edging toward a jump, I knew exactly what you meant.

      I love your words, especially Frap. But I probably won’t us it. I’m afraid someone would think I was pro-“fracking” and they’d start protesting outside my home. :)

  2. This is GREAT!!

    How about Bribler when he opens his mouth and all this material like kleenex, paper (maybe a pizza box or something from the garbage) is stuck under his gums and he tries to get it out with his tongue usually with no success the moment he’s busted.

  3. The only word I can think of is Poodaddle. My own word for dog poop.

  4. Gosh, just expanded my vocabulary by 9 words. Only we use vulture for when she strikes that pose while we’re in the kitchen doing anything other than cooking for her! Our other word is pupkus: the nose prints and slobber on the car windows.

    • I like pupkus more than my word: dog snot. Leave it to a writer to coin a cute term for canine mucous on a window. :)

  5. Well you got some great ones there! With Kelly we have Coptertail- when she sees something she really loves and her tail goes round and round in a circle.

    • Oooh, that’s one I forgot. Honey doesn’t do it. But when our first dog, Christie, did, we called it helicopter heinie.

  6. Our big word we developed for Bailie – huggles. She has naturally been a hugger since the first day we had her, but she also is a serial snuggler, so we named her behavior of putting her paws around a humans neck and nuzzling her nose into the neck huggling or huggles.

  7. Good ones! I have pupivents in much of my clothing…not just my underwear! We always called that slurpy slobbery noise the dogs make when they’re washing themselves “snarfing”. “Cricket legs” – when a dog lays down with their back legs stretched behind them (named for our Cricket who loves to do that).

    • Wow, we use snarfing too. I forgot all about it. It’s an onomatopoeia, isn’t it?

      And I love when dogs stretch their back legs behind them. That especially seems to be a beagle thing.

  8. I really like pupody…because I actually do that.

    • I recently saw a cute video of a man serenading his dog. Everyone was commenting about how sweet it was. But I wondered: Is there really anyone out there who doesn’t sing to his or her dog?

  9. I sing pupodies on a daily basis. Love this list, and glad to have a word for the songs I make up and sing to my dogs.

  10. Shiner is definitely a vulturer… if that’s even a word! lol Great list!

  11. This is absolutely fantastic. Today, I was talking to someone and he was trying to explain about a dog who wags his tail so hard that his butt wags too. I said “oh, a wigglebutt.” He had never heard of that. I think Carol has that one locked down.

    • But wigglebutt is such an expressive word. How could you call it anything else?

      For my part, I’m glad Carol isn’t like a big corporation and registering the trademark for wigglebutt. It’s too fun a word to give up.

  12. Wow, just realizing I’m not a dog person because I don’t know a single one of these words 😉

  13. ‘Pupody’ I love – I have so many of those!! We use “weeny bugger” when Mity has his “weeny bugger head on” which translates as wants to cause mischief. We also use it for Bd but have to ask him if he has his “big weeny bugger head on”.

    • You win the prize for most creative word. I have absolutely never heard anyone use the term “weeny bugger” ever.

  14. :oD I gift it to you!

  15. Let’s see – “pawdance” is the excited prancing done in anticipation of dinner. “Poopy” is an affectionate term for a puppy because, well, you know, puppies do that! And then there is “wallow” but pronounced “woller”….the ridiculous upside wiggling done on a bed that covers it in fur which then leads to “furwhumpf”. :)

    Entertaining post…..loved it.

  16. “PLUFFY”. That’s Franny for the fluffiest, plumpest dog blanket in the house. Which, naturally,only she gets to use. See “The Tao Of Franny” post. An old one. They’re all old right now. Been busy.

  17. And then there’s the HOOTCHIE SCOOTCH. You figure it out.

  18. Some of those are very familiar in our house:-)

  19. I only knew bdonk, but my meaning is totally different from yours. 😉

  20. I think the word Plove is Doodle*tastic!!

  21. Vlad & Barkly's Dee says:

    Common knowledge of Airedale people is the “big black nose poke.” It’s when your Airy comes either in front of you or behind you and pokes their nose up into your crotch with a bounce of their head. It generally has the tendency to make you jump — especially when they’re behind you. The Airys have a conspiracy to make sure they find someone standing just after they’ve taken a big drink and soaked their beards so that the person looks like they’ve sprung a leak. I guess Black Russians have enough Airedale in their genes that this was passed on because I’ve heard about more of them than just Vlad doing it. But it still makes me think that Vlad is channeling Dannyboy trying to make me laugh.

    • We have several in our house!
      Sit & spin – when said dog places it’s bum on the rug in a sit position and does a few 180’s to scratch its bum.

      Electric slide- when said dog gets in sit position and slides her bum down the back of the couch.

      Corn cobbing- when said dog chews itself or nearest item, even human limbs, as if eating corn. Just a gentle nibble.

      Crop dusting- when said dog walks past you while simultaneously passing gas.
      Butt on fire- when said dog gets wild eyed look and runs around the house in a somewhat symmetrical and repetitive manor for 30-60 seconds then pauses to catch breath before another victory lap.
      I love happy roll! We get that one lots!