pet

pet \pet\ (p[e^]t), n. [Formerly peat, perhaps from Ir. peat, akin to Gael. peata.] 1. A cade lamb; a lamb brought up by hand. [1913 Webster] 2. Any person especially cherished and indulged; a fondling; a darling; often, a favorite child. [1913 Webster] The love of cronies, pets, and favorites. --Tatler. [1913 Webster] 3. [Prob. fr. {Pet} a fondling, hence, the behavior or humor of a spoiled child.] A slight fit of peevishness or fretfulness. ``In a pet she started up.'' --Tennyson. [1913 Webster] 4. Any animal kept as a companion, usually in or around one's home, typically domesticated and cared for attentively and often affectionately. Distinguished from animals raised for food or to perform useful tasks, as a {draft animal}. [PJC]