Road Dog – Meaning, Origin and Usage

Does your dog love driving around town with you? Do you have a friend that can’t wait to go on a road trip? If so, you could be dealing with a “road dog.” The road dog loves time out on the tarmac. They love the thrill of being out on the open road with you and a chance to connect.

This post unpacks everything you need to know about the origin and meaning of the colloquial term road dog.

Road Dog Meaning

Road dog is an idiomatic expression used between friends. The term can describe both people and their pets. To be a “road dog” means that you like spending time in the car.

It doesn’t matter if that’s a trip around the block with their master or a road trip to another state with your best friend.

There are some people or animals just like the thrill of being in the car on a journey with you.

If your friend is a road dog, then he probably loves the sound of you asking him to join you on a road trip. They live for the moment on the road, viewing it as a chance to bond and get up to crazy antics.

A road dog can also be an animal. If you have a dog that leaps into the car every time you open the door, then you could have a road dog on your hands. The pup will likely love to stick its tongue out the window and take in the scenery. Some people think that sitting in the car is like watching a movie for a dog, and they love it.

Road Dog Example Usage

Sheldon: “Let’s take a road trip to Louisiana, but who’s going to come with us?”

Tammy: “We can invite Charles. He’s a real road dog.”

“Have you seen Candice driving around town with her Toy Pom hanging out the window? What a road dog, it’s adorable.”

“Your husky is a real road dog, I just open the door to my car, and she jumps right in.”

“Brain is a road dog that’s always up for a trip, anywhere, anytime.”

Road Dog Origin

The road dog is an idiomatic expression regarding both pets and people and their behavior in a car with their friends. The phrase first entered English in the 70s with “Deputy Dawg.” This cartoon character caught fire with kids.

However, the first use of Road dog comes with the spelling “Road dawg.” The phrase was more popular with African American communities when referencing a friend’s attitude to going on road trips with their friends.

The term road dog adapts from the African American saying, and now it’s a common term among all communities and ethnicities. The term road dog emerged in the 80s and 90s as popular among young people and college students when going on road trips for spring break.

Phrases Similar to Road Dog

  • Co-driver.
  • Co-pilot.

Phrases Opposite to Road Dog

  • Couch potato.

What is the Correct Saying?

  • Rod dog.
  • Road dawg.

Ways People May Say Road Dog Incorrectly

Some people may use the phrase to describe a dog they find on the road. They may also use the term to describe a dog living on the street without a home. These uses of the phrase are incorrect.

Acceptable Ways to Phrase Road Dog

You can use the phrase “road dog” to describe pets and people, depending on the context of the situation. For instance, your best friend could be a real road dog that enjoys a good road trip. Or your Alsatian could be a road dog that enjoys hanging out of the window while you drive around town. The phrase refers to a pet or person that enjoys spending time in the car with you.

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