For the first time in its history, the SPCA of Los Angeles has chosen to give its annual “Hero Dog” award to a cat.
Tara, a 7-year-old Tabby from Bakersfield, was honored for her fearlessness in the face of danger while defending a 5-year-old family member from a vicious dog attack.
Home security video captured incident, which occurred on May 13, 2014.
Jeremy Triantafilo was riding his tricycle in the driveway of his home when suddenly the neighbor’s dog came out from behind the family’s SUV and pounced on the boy, the video showed.
“The dog sunk his teeth into his leg, and pulled him off his bike while violently shaking him,” a release from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles stated.
Jeremy’s mother was only a few feet away, but even before she had a chance to react, Tara sprang into action.
The video showed Tara tackling the dog and knocking him off Jeremy.
After quickly pausing to look back toward Jeremy, Tara continued after the dog, chasing him out of the Triantafilo’s yard.
“We were so impressed by Tara’s bravery and fast action that the selection committee decided that a cat this spectacular should be the National Hero Dog” said spcaLA President Madeline Bernstein.