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

  • n. A small dog kept as a pet.
  • n. Informal One eager to do another's bidding, especially in order to maintain a position of privilege or favor: "a bunch of intellectual lap dogs for anybody who holds a big job in government” ( Mike Barnicle).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A small dog, kept as household pet, whose light weight and companionable temperament make it both suited and disposed to spend time resting in the comfort of its master's lap; a dog bred to behave in this manner.
  • n. A person who behaves in a servile manner, such as a sycophantic employee or a fawning lover.


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  • A person who is eager to please another at the expense of his or her own needs in order to maintain a position of privilege or favor.

    May 21, 2008