get your goat


get someone’s goat


  • irritate somebody
  • annoy someone
  • make someone feel very bad
  • a successful teasing

Example Sentences

  1. She got my goat the moment she said my mother was no good at parenting.
  2. Why are you so sad – who’s got your goat?
  3. Antonia has always taunted Andy and tried to get his goat without no reason.
  4. The newcomer in our class is very intolerant – you can easily get her goat.
  5. Abusing and shouting at home by kids often get my goat.
  6. I don’t like politics at all and fool leaders often gets my goat!
  7. Although I don’t want to get your goat but I’ve lost your phone – somewhere.
  8. I didn’t want to get your goat. I just wanted to show you the reality.
  9. In this part of the world, if you have got someone’s goat – nobody can save you.
  10. My Dad always get goat of everybody with his no sense of humour.


The expression started in the US and the principal passage originates from a story about a burst water pipe that was written in the US daily paper, May 1909:

“Wouldn’t that get your goat? We’d been exchanging similar water throughout the night from the tub to the bowl and back once more.”

The phrase took a couple of years to cross the Atlantic. The first non-US reference isn’t found until 1924, in the story White monkey by English author, John Galsworthy:

“That had got the chairman’s goat! – Got his goat? What expressions they utilized these days!”

The next year, The Times printed a piece in memory of Friedrich Baedeker who had just died:

“Wa-al Sadie, these durned three star things get my goat’!”

A usually rehashed story which tries to clarify the origin of this expression is that goats were set with racehorses to keep them quiet. At the point when never-do-wells who needed the pony to race removed it, that is, they ‘got somebody’s goat’, the pony ended up unsettled and ran badly.

In other words – few linguists believe that the idiom “get someone’s goat” originally belongs to horse racing. The horse is a very moody animal. In order to keep a horse calm and relaxed, coaches kept a goat as a stable mate for the horse for better performance in race.

The presence of a goat in stable had a secure and relaxing influence on the horse and also being a permanent companion, the horse was attached to the goat. Competitor owners used to bribe the stable employees to steal the goat at night before the final racing day. By the absence of the companion goat, the horse had got irritated and therefore it did not do well in race competition and had lost the game.

Share your opinions2 Opinions

I’ve always thought that getting someone’s goat referred to the prodigal son parable. When the son who stayed on his fathers estate and worked faithfully came upon the celebration where the fatted calf was slaughtered to celebrate the prodigal son’s return, the faithful son told the father that he had never been given even a goat to eat with his friends as thanks for years of faithful service. So the prodigal son was “getting his goat” and more, and jealousy was causing him to be angry.

‒ Paul Walkowski May 24, 2022

In the book “Life in Sing Sing” by Number 1500, published in 1904, in the chapter “Slang among convicts” on page 248, “Goat” is defined as “Anger; to exasperate.”

‒ M Cioffi May 4, 2022

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