Meaning of mongrel in English:



  • 1A dog of no definable type or breed.

    ‘she's a particularly intelligent mongrel with a lot of collie in her’
    as modifier ‘three-week-old mongrel pups’
    • ‘The mongrel hounds rushed up a slope, into a stand of scrub.’
    • ‘He lies in the nest for tonight, taken from a stray mutt and her mongrel puppies.’
    • ‘Lily the mongrel puppy was one of the first pooches to go online to promote a stray dogs website in North Yorkshire.’
    • ‘He tossed his apple core to a grey mongrel dog that had been trailing him though he doubted very much that it would be appreciated.’
    • ‘This was a mongrel breed incorporating strains of Labrador, Greyhound, anything that could advance the genes of endurance and pulling power.’
    • ‘One of the more unusual recruits to the unit was Tramp, a mongrel dog found starving and very ill in a puddle under the yacht.’
    • ‘There was a short silence between them, only interrupted when the mongrel dog jumped onto the foot of the bed. ‘Get down, Pia,’ ordered Sam.’
    • ‘With them was Bacchus, a mongrel dog who won the hearts of the crew and was rewarded in 1943 with a National Canine Defence League valiant dog medal.’
    • ‘Many mongrel dogs could be seen walking freely on the streets.’
    • ‘The only animal life that he encountered on the island were a small mongrel dog and a female pig that was a bit thin from lack of food.’
    • ‘Those who came to this show laughed at the antics of the mongrels, and noticed that canines could suffer from stage fear.’
    • ‘‘Don't worry, the mongrel won't bite,’ he assured.’
    • ‘Over the past year she has noticed unusual stereotyped behaviour displayed by Candy, her 9 year old mongrel bitch, which occurs only before hypoglycaemic episodes.’
    • ‘My two dogs, both mongrels, died at 13 and 15 years old.’
    • ‘Most dogs would have been mongrels of one sort or another, however the various traits of certain types of dog were already highly valued.’
    • ‘So they opened up the event to mutts and mongrels too, with categories like Most Appealing Eyes.’
    • ‘The dogs - a mongrel, a Labrador, a papillon and three cocker spaniels - identified their chosen sample by lying down next to it.’
    • ‘The council had served him an environmental protection notice, ordering him to silence his dog, a mongrel called Charlie which he has had for seven years.’
    • ‘Pedigree dogs and mongrels performed the same overall, but pedigree cats scored marginally higher than mixed breed cats on all the tests.’
    • ‘One of the most popular animals is a ten-year-old mongrel dog, whose owners had to move away.’
    cross-bred, mixed-breed, half-breed, hybrid
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    1. 1.1Any animal resulting from the crossing of different breeds or types.
      • ‘He has done workshops with farmers in Cambodia and his findings support the general belief that many farmed animals are genetic mongrels.’
      • ‘Because they have lived alongside each other for so long, true Scottish wildcats and crossbred mongrels are difficult to tell apart.’
      • ‘They are mating with the local rare species of white-headed duck producing a mongrel that could force the indigenous breed into extinction.’
      • ‘Japanese mongrel pigmented male rabbits weighing 2.5 to 3.5 kg were used.’
      • ‘There is was with a chicken leg in its mouth, grinning in such a way only an emaciated mongrel kitten-cat can grin.’
      • ‘My formerly-feral cat, Buddy, an all-black mongrel found on the streets when he was about eight months old, is now nearly three years old.’
      • ‘The reason, they say, is the creation of a new race of mongrel salmon - the product of escaped farmed salmon breeding with wild fish.’
      • ‘If mongrel species represent genetic novelty and are stabilizing components of their ecosystems, are they not worth saving?’
      cross-breed, cross, mixed breed, half-breed, hybrid
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    2. 1.2offensive A person of mixed descent.
      ‘she was a mongrel, only half French’


Late Middle English of Germanic origin, apparently from a base meaning ‘mix’, and related to mingle and among.