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[fet-lok] /ˈfɛtˌlɒk/
the projection of the leg of a horse behind the joint between the cannon bone and great pastern bone, bearing a tuft of hair.
the tuft of hair itself.
Also called fetlock joint. the joint at this point.
Origin of fetlock
1275-1325; Middle English fitlok, akin to Middle High German viz(ze)loch, ultimately derivative of Germanic *fet-, a gradational variant of *fot- foot Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for fetlock
Historical Examples
  • There was one name that was upon every tongue from the start, but it was the last to get utterance—fetlock Jones's.

  • There are three of these joints—the fetlock, pastern, and coffin.

    Special Report on Diseases of the Horse United States Department of Agriculture
  • This bone (cannon-bone) between the knee and the fetlock should be short, straight, and strong.

    Riding and Driving Edward L. Anderson
  • The inside of the fetlock is often bruised by the shoe or the hoof of the opposite foot.

    Domestic Animals Richard L. Allen
  • Sedgett, as I passed, made a sweep at my horse's knees, and took them a little over the fetlock.

    Rhoda Fleming, Complete George Meredith
  • Put the ingredients into a bag, and secure it above the fetlock.

  • He stooped and fastened the straps about the forelegs of the horse just above the fetlock.

    The Gold Girl James B. Hendryx
  • In the legs, from the base of the fetlock to that of the ham, U, V.

  • "Sweenied" shoulders are more often due to disease below the fetlock than to affections above the elbow.

    Special Report on Diseases of the Horse United States Department of Agriculture
  • More than one horseman turned home that day with a red bandage round his horse's fetlock, for Kilmanagh stones are sharp.

    Lives of the Fur Folk M. D. Haviland
British Dictionary definitions for fetlock


a projection behind and above a horse's hoof: the part of the leg between the cannon bone and the pastern
Also called fetlock joint. the joint at this part of the leg
the tuft of hair growing from this part
Word Origin
C14 fetlak; related to Middle High German vizzeloch fetlock, from vizzel pastern + -och; see foot
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for fetlock

early 14c., fetlak, from a Germanic source (cf. Dutch vetlock, Middle High German fizlach, German Fiszloch), perhaps related to the root of German fessel "pastern."

The Middle English diminutive suffix -ok (from Old English -oc) was misread and the word taken in folk etymology as being a compound of feet and lock (of hair).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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