Sain baina uu!
(that’s “hello” in Mongolia).
English-speakers love idioms. And so do we, here at ABA English. Why? Because they are so descriptive and there is a perfect idiom for every occasion.
To check previous posts about idioms:
(and there’s more… just search on our blog!)
Today, however, we will be looking at idioms that use specific animals. Starting with the cat.
Let’s get started!
Interesting Idioms with Cats
Alley cat – a stray cat that lives on the street, not in a home.
Example: “I began to give the alley cat some chicken and now he follows me home every day”.
Cat burglar – a burglar who enters a building by climbing a wall.
Example: “Can you believe a cat burglar stole Jenny’s apartment? He climbed up the tree!”
Cat gets one’s tongue – one cannot speak because of shyness.
Example: “When I meet a lot of people, the cat gets my tongue: I cannot speak because I am so shy”.
A cat has nine lives – cats have the reputation to survive accidents that would kill other animals.
Example: “James is like a cat with nine lives, he is always falling down but never gets hurt”.
A cat nap – a short sleep taken during the day.
Example: “Sometimes, if I am very tired, I have a cat nap in the afternoon”.
Copycat – someone who copies something another person does.
Example: “Anna is a copy cat: yesterday she bought the same shoes as me and today she’s wearing the same jumper”.
Curiosity killed the cat – being too nosy or curious may get a person into trouble.
Example: “You should not worry about what your friend is doing. Remember, curiosity killed the cat.”
Fight like cats and dogs – to argue and fight with someone.
Example: “My little brother and I used to fight like cats and dogs”.
Grin like a Cheshire cat – to grin or smile a lot.
Example: “My friend Hugh was grinning like a Cheshire cat after he won the competition”.
Let the cat out of the bag – to tell something that is supposed to be a secret.
Example: “You let the cat out of the bag when you told him about the surprise birthday party”.
Look like something the cat dragged in – to look tired or worn out or dirty.
Example: “After working so many hours, I looked like something the cat had dragged in”.
Not enough room to swing a cat – not very much space.
Example: “There is not enough room to swing a cat in my tiny apartment”.
A scaredy-cat – someone who is easily frightened (usually used by children).
Example: “The children called their friend a scaredy-cat because she would not enter the empty house”.
When the cat’s away, the mice will play – when you are not watching someone they may get into trouble, when a person with authority is absent then those below him or her can do whatever they want.
Example: “As you know, when the cat’s away, the mice will play so when the boss went on holiday it was chaos in the office”.