call off the/(one's) dogs

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call off the/(one's) dogs

1. To stop disparaging or otherwise behaving aggressively toward someone. I know you wish I were a doctor, dad, but call off the dogs for one night. I'll tell you anything you want to know, just call off your dogs!
2. To stop someone else from disparaging or otherwise behaving aggressively toward another person. Your mother won't stop interrogating me—can you please call off the dogs?
See also: call, dog, off

call off the dogs


call off your dogs

If someone calls off the dogs or calls off their dogs, they stop criticizing or attacking someone or encouraging other people to criticize or attack someone. Lenders will be ordered to call off the dogs, especially for families struggling to pay their mortgage through unemployment. Maybe he'll call off his dogs now that he knows I'm not taking his money. Note: The dogs referred to here are dogs used for hunting.
See also: call, dog, off

call off the (or your) dogs

stop attacking or persecuting someone or causing others to do so on your behalf.
See also: call, dog, off
References in periodicals archive ?
Not as quirky as he can be - I remember a surreal curfew-busting turn at Ronnie Scott's - but a welcome return nonetheles RON POPE: Calling Off The Dogs ?
Having hunted raccoons this way, I can tell you it's a heck of a lot of fun even if all you're doing is chasing the 'coon up a tree and calling off the dogs.
Up just 23-19 through three quarters last week, Oregon outscored WSU 28-7 in the second half, and that despite calling off the dogs in the fourth quarter, going to backup players and conservative play-calling.
But here's a suggestion for its senior officials: save yourself time, energy and likely disappointment by calling off the dogs hunting the betting exchanges.
He's probably also relieved that she hasn't joined Italian porn babe La Cicciolina in offering him a kneetrembler in return for calling off the dogs of war.
In the season opener against Brigham Young, Bob Bender, Washington's coach, began calling off the dogs midway through the second half, telling Sanford he was going to come out in three minutes.