It’s time for another idiom quiz! All these idioms relate to the most popular American pets, dogs and cats. Read each sentence and think about the possible meaning of the idiom in bold. Then scroll down to “let the cat out of the bag” by checking your answers. Woof…I mean, good luck!

  1. During the dog days of summer, Cristina likes to go swimming to stay cool.
  2. Getting a job after university can be hard. It’s a dog-eat-dog job market; you have to be competitive.
  3. I didn’t want Olga to know about the surprise party, but Min let the cat out of the bag.
  4. I know you’re curious, but you shouldn’t look through Jean’s papers. Remember, curiosity killed the cat.
  5. João was in the dog house when he forgot his fiancé’s birthday. She was angry!
  6. Zahara is waiting to find out her TOEFL score, and she’s like a cat on a hot tin roof. She can’t sit still.
  7. This neighborhood used to be nice, but now it has gone to the dogs. The houses are in poor condition, and there’s trash all over the street.
  8. Were you flirting with Rano? You’re barking up the wrong tree; she’s married!
  9. What has Korhan done? He keep giggling and won’t look at me. He looks like the cat that ate the canary.
  10. Why aren’t you participating in the discussion, Claudia? Has the cat got your tongue?





  1. the dog days of summer = the hottest part of summer (named for when Sirius, the “Dog Star”, rises)
  2. dog-eat-dog = competitive, ruthless
  3. let the cat out of the bag = to reveal a secret
  4. Curiosity killed the cat. = Being too curious can get you into trouble.
  5. in the dog house = in trouble with someone; out of someone’s favor
  6. like a cat on a hot tin roof = anxious and agitated
  7. to have gone to the dogs = to become worse in quality
  8. barking up the wrong tree = to make the wrong choice
  9. to look like the cat that ate the canary = to look guilty (A canary is a small songbird that is often kept as a pet.)
  10. Has the cat got your tongue? = Why aren’t you saying anything?

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