Here Kitty, Kitty…..

I called our cat this morning and wondered why it is that cats all seem to respond to “kitty, kitty, kitty”.  People who speak other languages — how do they call their cats? In Spanish speaking countries where gato is the word for cat, a small cat would be gatito and I think that repeating the word would have the same effect as kitty, kitty, kitty.   I remember trying to cozy up to some cats when I was in Germany quite a few years ago.  “Here, kitty, kitty,” had absolutely no impact.  I didn’t think to try “katz, katz, katz” and see if I got a response. I have discovered that canines are language specific as well. Up the road from us there used to be a pesty dog that followed me when I was out walking.  I would put on a stern face and shout, “No! Go home!’ to no avail.  It smilingly pressed onward, tail wagging, keeping exact pace with me. Then I remembered that the dog’s owners were people who had recently moved here from the Ukraine. The next day I tried “Nyet!” and voila!  It worked like a charm — the dog dutifully went back to its own house.

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