watchdog

watchdog

Meaning

  • one who protects against loss, corruption, waste, or objectionable practices.
  • a person or company that make sure that one is not involve in illegal act.
  • a person or organisation whose responsibility it is to ensure that major corporations uphold people’s rights.
  • a dog that has been taught to watch over a place.
  • a dog kept as a property guard.

Examples in Sentences

  1. Professor Smith was doing a lot of watchdogging during the mid-term exams at Polk High.
  2. Sally was watchdogged by two store security agents as she made a series of loud noises while shopping yesterday with Mike.
  3. Corruption and outright carbon fraud need to be watchdogged relentlessly.
  4. The Education Department has long watchdogged special education agendas across the country.
  5.  Rock, our loyal watchdog, was able to alert us to intruders trying to encroach on our property late at night.
  6. We trained a young puppy over many years to finally become a great watchdog and a loving pet.

Origin

The term “watchdog” has been a popular word for many decades in the American lexicon. However, the terms “watch” and “dog” were fused together in the 17th century. Historians note that William Shakespeare is responsible for the creation of the word. You can find it in his work, The Tempest. It is interesting to note that the term “watch” is a verb. And the word “dog,” for one’s lovable and trustworthy pet, is a noun. The original use included a hyphen of “watch-dog,” but that form was dropped for our more modern use of it as “watchdog.”

William Shakespeare used the term in a literal sense to mean having a large dog around one’s property or locale to scare off would-be encroachers or those looking to do harm. Many centuries after Shakespeare, the term “guard dog” became synonymous with the watch-dog. Before the modern age of 24/7 security using cameras and closed-circuit TV, the watchdog was of importance to keeping a house or home more protected. The watchdog can be considered a loyal and be trusted more than humans at times.

An idiomatic version of “watchdog” would be a bit more interesting since a teacher sitting at his desk could be mimicking an animal by making sure there is no cheating by students on the mid-term test that is occurring. Of course, a better idiom would be a teacher that looked the other way as it related to students who were openly cheating on a test and getting away with it. The teacher would be considered as “scrupulous as a compromised watchdog who will cave if the doggie treat is the right one.”

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Meaning: to have an important standing in society

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