chase (one's) tail

(redirected from chasing his tail)

chase (one's) tail

To take action that is ineffectual and does not lead to progress. Refers to how a dog can exhaust itself by chasing its own tail. Come on, Bill, go to sleep. You're just chasing your tail at this point, but you might have a breakthrough with the research if you take a break from it. I'm trying not to chase my tail on this project, but so many components of it are just not working out.
See also: chase, tail

chase tail

slang To pursue or seek out sexual activity with someone. (Usually used by men to refer to women.) My brother always spends his weekends chasing tail in bars around town.
See also: chase, tail
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

chase your (own) tail

keep on doing something futile. informal
See also: chase, tail
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

chase your (own) ˈtail

be very busy but in fact achieve very little: In my first month at college I was continually chasing my own tail and being late for everything. ▶ ˈtail-chasing noun
If a dog or cat chases its tail, it runs round in circles trying to bite its own tail.
See also: chase, tail
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

chase (one's) tail

To exert oneself vigorously but ineffectually.
See also: chase, tail
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.
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References in periodicals archive ?
SHANE LOWRY has been chasing his tail on the PGA Tour all season - and he finally ran out of road at the Wyndham Championship.
He had been chasing his tail all this time by not spending honestly on people and infrastructure which led to the disastrous situation, he said.
It is possible he has taken your attention to stop him chasing his tail as 'praise'.
Improving day by day is our Male Club Captain Ronnie De Pryck I was particularly delighted to see him achieve a massive PB by 3 minutes 21.27 having spent the past couple of weeks chasing his tail.
We reckon John Terry will be left chasing his tail and floundering Fernando will be asking Van Persie for some scoring tips.
At York, the feature race can go to Mukhadram (2.55) given he will not have Al Kazeem chasing his tail on this occasion.
When the puppy wasn't chasing his tail, his owners used a high rate of reinforcement for calm behavior, especially for lying quietly on his bed.
He loves chasing his tail, playing fetch and curling up on the sofa with his owners Louise Mason-Crowe and Andrew Crowe, from Coulby Newham, Middlesbrough.
Unbeaten in two starts and bred to be a bit better than a handicapper, so the assessor might be chasing his tail with this filly for a little while yet
BAXTER, my adorable six-month-old West Highland Terrier, enjoys taking walks with his owner, stopping occasionally to sniff other dogs bottoms and napping in between chewing smelly socks, chasing his tail, eating questionable objects and digging dirt.
He has been forced to share his habitat with the stupidest mutt in existence, who spends hours chasing his tail, crashing into the furniture and barking without provocation.
QMY seven-month-old English Bull Terrier keeps going round in circles chasing his tail. Our vet says he needs something to keep his mind occupied.
The Farnborough he went to is three miles from Biggin Hill airport and he was chasing his tail trying to find his pilot.
And despite showing a lack of respect to the world No.1 on the court as he had him chasing his tail at times, the sublime Spaniard said he still holds Federer in high regard, and backed his main rival to hit back.