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do·giealso do·gy (dō′gē)
n. pl. do·gies Western US
A stray or motherless calf.
Word History: In the language of the American West, a stray or motherless calf is known as a dogie. The origin of this word remains uncertain, but Ramon F. Adams, the author of numerous works on western Americana and a cowboy himself, offered one possible etymology for dogie in his book Western Words. During the 1880s, when a series of harsh winters left large numbers of orphaned calves, the little calves, weaned too early, were unable to digest coarse range grass, and their swollen bellies "very much resembled a batch of sourdough carried in a sack." Such a calf was referred to as dough-guts. The term, altered to dogie according to Adams, "has been used ever since throughout cattleland to refer to a pot-gutted orphan calf." Another possibility is that dogie is an alteration of Spanish dogal, "lariat." Still another is that it is simply a variant pronunciation of doggie.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
n, pl -gies or -geys
(Agriculture) Western US and Canadian a motherless calf
[C19: from dough-guts, because they were fed on flour and water paste]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
n., pl. -gies. Western U.S.
a motherless calf.
[1885–90, Amer.; orig. obscure; alleged to be doughg(uts) + -ie]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.