Etymology
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lapdog (n.)

also lap-dog, 1640s, "small dog fondled in the lap," from lap (n.1) + dog (n.); figurative sense of "subservient person" is by 1950.

Senator McCarthy (R-Wis) renewed his Communists-in-Government charges today and called Senator Tydings (D-Md) the Truman administration's "whimpering lap dog." [AP news story, Aug. 7, 1950]
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dog-ear (v.)

also dogs-ear, "to use a book so as to leave the corners of the leaves soiled and curled over" (like the ears of a dog), 1650s. Dog's ear (n.) is by 1725. Dog-eared in the general or extended sense of "worn, unkempt" is by 1894.

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dog-trot (n.)

"a gentle trot, like that of a dog," mid-15c.

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dog-gone (adj.)

also doggone, colloquial minced epithet, by 1849, Western American English, a "fantastic perversion of god-damned" [Weekley]. But Mencken favors the theory that it is "a blend form of dog on it; in fact it is still often used with it following. It is thus a brother to the old English phrase, 'a pox upon it,' but is considerably more decorous." Dog on it was the usual early spelling, so it was perhaps at least felt as such by those using it.

But there are many examples of similar words serving as euphemistic perversions of God: Compare dod for "God" in many oaths (late 17c. through 19c.); dodgasted (probably "God-blasted," in use late 19c., early 20c.); dod-rot (1842).

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corn-dog (n.)

"frankfurter dipped in cornmeal batter, fried, and served on a stick," 1949, American English; see corn (n.1) + hot dog. Said to have been introduced by Vaudeville performers Neil and Carl Fletcher in 1942 at the Texas State Fair.

Be the first to serve this delicious new sandwich. No special ingredients needed. Cooks 1 to 4 sandwiches at a time in 5 minutes. Costs only 5 ¢ each to make—sells for 15 ¢ to 20 ¢ apiece. Recipe and instructions shipped with oven. [advertisement for Dixie Corn Dog Ovens in The Billboard, Feb. 26, 1949]
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dog-tired (n.)

"as tired as a dog after a long chase," 1806.

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hang-dog (adj.)
also hangdog, 1670s, apparently "befitting a hang-dog," that is, a despicable, degraded fellow, so called either from being fit only to hang a dog (with construction as in cutthroat, daredevil) or of being a low person (i.e. dog) fit only for hanging. The noun, however, is attested only from 1680s.
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dog days (n.)

"period of dry, hot weather at the height of summer," 1530s, from Latin dies caniculares, the idea, though not the phrase, from Greek; so called because they occur around the time of the heliacal rising of Sirius, the Dog Star (kyōn seirios). Noted as the hottest and most unwholesome time of the year; often reckoned as July 3 to August 11, but variously calculated, depending on latitude and on whether the greater Dog-star (Sirius) or the lesser one (Procyon) is reckoned.

The heliacal rising of Sirius has shifted down the calendar with the precession of the equinoxes; in ancient Egypt c. 3000 B.C.E. it coincided with the summer solstice, which also was the new year and the beginning of the inundation of the Nile. The "dog" association apparently began here (the star's hieroglyph was a dog), but the reasons for it are now obscure.

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bulldog (n.)
also bull-dog, "small, strong, muscular kind of dog noted for courage and ferocity," c. 1500, from bull (n.1) + dog (n.). So called perhaps from the shape, perhaps because they originally were used for baiting bulls. In U.S. newspaper slang, the bulldog edition (1910) was the earliest run of a daily paper.
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