What Does It Mean to Call Someone “Dogwater”?
What Does It Mean to Call Someone “Dogwater”?
If you’re a member of the gaming community, you may have heard the term “dogwater” being thrown around, especially while playing Fortnight. This popular slang term started out as an insult used to mock other players, but gamers have started using it outside of the gaming world. Read on to find out about what “dogwater” means, how it’s used, and where it came from.
What Does “Dogwater” Mean?

What do people mean when they say “dogwater”?

“Dogwater” is a slang term meaning “extremely bad” or “trash.” It’s used to say that someone is unskilled at something, usually related to gaming. It’s a way to talk trash to degrade and discourage another player at a lower skill level. The term has also become popular on other platforms like Twitch and TikTok, where it has a similar meaning to the phrase “you’re trash.” Here are a few examples of how “dogwater” is used in a sentence: “You’re so bad, you’re free dogwater.” “Your aim is dogwater. You missed me, and I’m literally standing in front of you.” “This rifle is complete dogwater, man. It does zero damage.” “I wasted 2 hours on that dogwater game.” “This headset is dogwater. I can’t hear anything on it.” “Your team is so dogwater, this isn’t even fun anymore.”

Where did “dogwater” come from?

Gamers used “dogwater” as an insult instead of using profanity. The game Fortnite has voice and text chat features that can be disabled or filtered for inappropriate language by using parental controls. Instead of using profanity for dog feces, players started using the term “dogwater” in the text chat. It’s also a form of algospeak, or words people use in videos or recordings they share on social media platforms to avoid being banned or penalized by the algorithms. The term was popularized by a Fortnite content creator named Zachology in December 2020 when he created a clip on Twitch where he used the term in a string of insults that parodied Piece Control Kyle, a fictional stereotypical professional Fortnite player. “Dogwater” immediately caught on and became a common insult used by people who play Fortnite. A few believe “dogwater” comes from a faux ad for Dog Water from an episode of The Ren & Stimpy Show titled “Ren’s Retirement,” which aired on April 2, 1994. There’s no evidence that the terms are related.

Some think it’s a shorter version of “hot dog water.” A few people on Reddit forums believe “dogwater” refers to “hot dog water,” or the water left over after boiling hot dogs. There’s no confirmation that this is true. “Hot dog water” is also an insulting nickname for one of the animated Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated characters. Voiced by actress Linda Cardellini, Marcie “Hot Dog Water” Fleach was given the name because she smelled like recycled water used to boil hot dogs due to her father’s job at an amusement park. In March 2024, the convenience store chain 7-Eleven announced they were releasing sparkling water inspired by their signature Big Bite Hot Dog. The product was meant to be an April Fool’s Day joke, but the chain actually produced a limited supply.

“Dogwater” meant both “semen” and “urine” in the past. In the 1960s, the term “dog water” referred to semen. Later, in the 1970s-80s, it was used to mean water that came from a dog or urine. Neither seems connected with the modern slang term.

Gaming Insults Similar to “Dogwater”

Gamers playing Fortnight use many terms to insult other gamers. Several of these terms are often used at the same time as “dogwater” to insult someone and mock their skill level and equipment. With an average of 230 million active players a month, these insults can get creative. Many of the insults refer to how the winner defeated the loser. They may also say that the loser is “free,” which means they were so easily defeated it didn’t cost the winner anything. Other common themes are that players are so bad they have no earnings from competitive gameplay or use substandard equipment. A few examples of these insults are: “I boxed you like a fish.” “You’re freer than a Costco sample.” “That’s a Dollar Tree headset.” “You’re freer than a public bathroom.” “I caged you like a zoo animal.” “Take off that Goodwill headset. You’re done.” “You play like you have a pawn shop console.” “You’re freer than soiled underpants.” ”404 Earnings Not Found.” “You’re lost like your dad. He’s never coming home.” “You’re freer than a dollar-off coupon to Dollar Tree.” “You have no earnings.”

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