Extract substrings in a string using regex if the prefix matches one from the list


The prefixes are Dog, Cat, Bird, horse and they end with numbers.

The output should only be Dog1234, Cat4567, Bird2342344, Horse898087, Dog2345, Bird2340988

$text = 'I Dog1234 need Cat4567 do Bird2342344 extract Horse898087 the  Dog2345 strings that contain the a set of prefixes using regex Bird2340988'

$mymatchedStrings = $text | Select-String -Pattern '.*([Dog|Cat|Bird|Horse]\d+).*' -AllMatches


>Solution :

You can use

Select-String '\b(?:Dog|Cat|Bird|Horse)\d+\b' -input $text -AllMatches | Foreach {$_.matches.value}


  • \b – word boundary
  • (?:Dog|Cat|Bird|Horse) – a non-capturing group matching one of the listed alternative words
  • \d+ – one or more digits
  • \b – word boundary.


  • .*(...).* patterns match the entire line (or string depending on the context and flags) and thus should not be used in cases when you expect to match multiple substrings in a longer text (as it is the case here)
  • [Dog|Cat|Bird|Horse] is a character class, you need a grouping construct to match alternative multicharacter substrings
  • -AllMatches returns all matched occurrences, not just the first one
  • Foreach {$_.matches.value} returns the match text only, not the whole match data info.

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