Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Extremely tired.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Exhausted.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Tired as a dog after a long chase.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. drained of energy or effectiveness; extremely tired; completely exhausted

Etymologies

Dog tired is an old English phrase usually hyphenated to dog-tired. An adjectival phrase meaning to be physically exhausted, it derives from an old tale of Alfred the Great who used to send his sons out with his extensive kennels of hunting dogs. Whichever of his sons, be it Athelbrod or Edwin, were able to catch more of the hounds would gain their father's right hand side at the dinner table that evening. These chases would leave them 'dog-tired' yet merry at their victory. The tradition was continued for a few generations but is not noted in literature after Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • And sometimes, yes, my body and mind are just dog-tired and I need to sleep in instead of getting up for my pre-dawn run.

    Food, Energy and Change « Looking for Roots

  • I can see myself now, worn out and dog-tired after the long day, lying on the mats of the palace veranda and gazing upon her at the piano, myself in a perfect idiocy of bliss.

    THE PRINCESS

  • They looked to be dog-tired, too, but I doubt that anyone will ever see a happier reunion of sisters — at least onthisside of the grave.

    R.I.P.

  • “Enjoy, and when you see some women younger than you going through the dog-tired blues, you send them a drink.”

    Blood Lite II: Overbite

  • I made it to Home Sweet Home dead dog-tired, checked in, trudged to my room, and opened the door.

    The Exorsistah: X Returns

  • We're dog-tired, Wrinkled as a Sharpei and barking like a bitch.

    Introduction to the WOOF Pack | The Stiletto Gang

  • It shows three soldiers, unshaven and dog-tired from battle, trudging through Paris past a Parisian woman bundled in rags.

    Soldiers Armed With Pencils and Paint

  • He beamed, and I thought, oh God, please let him get off at Custer City; it was hot, and I was dog-tired, and wanted peace.

    Isabelle

  • But as dog-tired as many Virginians may be of campaigns, the fact remains that the Democratic primary will be June 9 and one of three candidates will be selected to run against Republican Bob McDonnell.

    Mucking Around For Votes: Clinton At The Pig Sty

  • I'm dog-tired of being accused of trotting out clichéd terms.

    Sarah Schmelling: Dan Brown, Annoying Facebook Friend

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