Etymology
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Words related to pet

petty (adj.)

late 14c., peti, "small, little, minor," from a phonemic spelling of Old French petit "small" (see petit). From late 12c. in surnames. In English, not originally disparaging (as still in petty cash "small sums of money received or paid," 1834; petty officer "minor or inferior military officer," 1570s).

Meaning "of small or minor importance, not serious" is recorded from 1520s; that of "small-minded" is from 1580s. Related: Pettily; pettiness.

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cade (n.)
"a pet or tame animal," especially a lamb, late 15c., often used in reference to young animals abandoned by their mothers and brought up by hand; of unknown origin. Meaning "spoiled or over-indulged child" is from 1877. Also as a verb, "to rear by hand or tenderly," and an adjective (late 15c.).
goat (n.)

Old English gat "she-goat," from Proto-Germanic *gaito (source also of Old Saxon get, Old Norse geit, Danish gjed, Middle Dutch gheet, Dutch geit, Old High German geiz, German Geiß, Gothic gaits "goat"), from PIE *ghaid-o- "young goat," also forming words for "to play" (source also of Latin hædus "kid").

They are sprightly, capricious, and wanton, and their strong odor (technically called hircine) is proverbial. [Century Dictionary]

The word for "male goat" in Old English was bucca or gatbucca (see buck (n.)) until late 1300s shift to he-goat, she-goat (Nanny goat is 18c., billy goat 19c.). Meaning "licentious man" is attested from 1670s (hence goat-milker, name of a bird formerly believed to suck the milk from goats at night, but also old slang for "a prostitute," also "the female pudendum"). To get (someone's) goat is by 1908, American English, the source of many fanciful explanation stories; perhaps from French prendre sa chèvre "take one's source of milk," or more likely it is "to steal a goat mascot" from a racehorse, warship, fire company, military unit, etc.

... to become separated from your goat is a thing no soldierman is willing to contemplate. ["Letitia, Nursery Corps, U.S.A.," in American Magazine, vol. lxiv, June 1907]
petulant (adj.)

1590s, "immodest, wanton, saucy," from French petulant (mid-14c.), from Latin petulantem (nominative petulans) "wanton, froward, saucy, insolent," present participle of petere "to attack, assail; strive after; ask for, beg, beseech" (from PIE root *pet- "to rush, to fly"). Meaning "irritable, manifesting peevish impatience" is by 1775, probably by influence of pet (n.2). Related: Petulantly.

petting (n.)

1873, "fondling, indulgence," verbal noun from pet (v.). Meaning "amorous caressing, foreplay" is from 1920 (in F. Scott Fitzgerald).

pet peeve (n.)

"thing that provokes one most," by 1917, from pet (n.1) in the adjectival sense "especially cherished thing" (1826), here in jocular or ironic use with peeve (n.) and perhaps a suggestion of pet (n.2).

pettish (adj.)

1550s, "impetuous," evidently from pet (n.2) in its "proceeding from or pertaining to ill humor" sense, + -ish. Meaning "peevish, easily annoyed" is from 1590s.

It has naturally been assoc. with PET sb.1, as being a characteristic habit of a "pet" or indulged and spoiled child; but the connexion of sense is not very clear or simple .... [OED]

Related: Pettishly; pettishness.