This post is taken, slightly modified, from one of my old blogs.
More than 20 years ago, my mother, stepfather, grandmother, stepniece and I spent a few days in Toronto. On the first night, we saw a cat lying in a yard relaxing, not unlike the American kitties. Being a catlover, I greeted the cat, "Kitty kitty". The cat ignored me. I used all the usual terms of endearment people address to cats; no response. Finally it occurred to me that we were in Canada, and I said, "Meowez-vous français?"
And the cat looked up and meowed!