'Moose' or 'Mooses' or 'Meese': What is the Plural of ‘Moose’?

By Kristy Ramirez, updated on October 27, 2022

When trying to decide on the plural form of 'moose,' it's difficult to figure out what rules to follow. The word 'moose' pretty much breaks all pluralization rules anyway, and that's why people get extremely creative when they are trying to describe more than one moose.' All the obvious options are incorrect.

What is the plural of 'moose'? The plural of 'moose' is 'moose.' That is the only acceptable way to talk about more than one 'moose' since 'meese' and 'mooses' are not correct choices.

What is a 'Moose'?

'Moose' are part of the deer family. They are the largest species in that family, and the male moose's antlers make them easily recognizable.

The word deer also creates problems for many people when making it plural since it follows a different set of rules.

What is the Plural of 'Moose'?

Whether you are talking about one majestic 'moose,' two lovely 'moose,' or an entire group of 'moose,' the word is the same. The plural of 'moose' is always ‘moose.’

Many people find this hard to comprehend since the word 'goose' has a near identical spelling, and the plural is 'geese.' However, there are logical reasons for the difference, even if they don't seem to follow standard grammar rules.

The Origins of the Word 'Moose'?

'Moose' doesn't follow standard English grammar rules because it's a loan word from the Native American language. Loanwords are integrated into English, but they often aren't changed. Though some may be modified, 'moose' was not one of them. Since the Native American language pluralized 'moose' by leaving the word the same, so do we.

'Goose' Versus 'Moose'

The fact that 'goose' and 'moose' rhyme and are so similar in spelling is just a coincidence. The words do not originate from the same language since 'goose' comes from Old English and is, therefore, subject to the rules of that language. That makes the plural of ‘goose’ the commonly known word ‘geese.’ 'Moose,' coming from the Native American language, follows its own guidelines.

Using 'Moose' in a Sentence

How do you use the same word to express the singular and plural forms? Here are some examples:

Singular Usage of ‘Moose’

     The lone ‘moose’ approached my car.

Plural Usage of ‘Moose’

     There were more ‘moose’ than I had ever seen before.

Possessive Form of 'Moose'

There is one time when you will use standard rules for dealing with the word 'moose,' and that's when you are dealing with possession.

If you want to show that a 'moose' has possession of something, you follow the standard rules and add an apostrophe and an 's.' The spelling will be the same whether you are dealing with singular possessive or plural possessive.

An example of the singular possessive form of 'moose' is:

     I followed a moose's tracks deep into the forest.

An example of the plural possessive form of 'moose' is:

     I saw many moose's tracks as I headed back to my car.

Final Thoughts on 'Moose'

Don't try to apply standard English guidelines to 'moose,' a word that originated in the Algonquian language and still follows those rules. The plural of 'moose' is always 'moose.' An apostrophe and 's' can be added to show possession, but that's really the only time modifications are made to this particular word.

There are other confusing words that we regularly use in the English language, so look for guidance when these words create an exception instead of following a rule.

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Written By:
Kristy Ramirez
Kristy Ramirez has a BA in English and taught English/Language Arts to middle school students for a decade. She has been a freelance writer for seven years and spends most of her free time reading.

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