A squirrel, a zebra, a deer, a wolf, and a grizzly bear meet in a field. Yes, a disaster in the making, but also a bunch of quadrupeds — animals that walk on four feet.

Cut quadruped in half and it makes sense: quadru means four, like when a woman births four babies they are called quadruplets. And –ped is for the feet: think of centipedes and millipedes, insects that have so many feet it’s disturbing. A human is a biped because they walk on two feet. If you meet a human with four feet, you could call him a quadruped. You could also call the circus and let them know their quadruped is loose.

Definitions of quadruped
  1. noun

    an animal especially a mammal having four limbs specialized for walking

    see moresee less

    type of:


    a vertebrate animal having four feet or legs or leglike appendages

  2. adjective

    having four feet

    four-footed, quadrupedal
    see moresee less


    biped, bipedal, two-footed

    having two feet

Word Family