(CATS/ANIMAL HEROES) Just one more (of the many) compelling reasons to adopt a homeless animal—they could end up saving your child. That’s what Tara, the “Hero Cat” from Bakersfield, did for her family’s little boy Jeremy. The loyal pet roared to the four-year-old’s rescue after a neighborhood dog attacked him.

Now the courageous little feline, adopted six years ago by the Triantafilo family, is getting an All American tribute. She’ll be throwing the ceremonial first pitch at Tuesday’s home game of the Bakersfield Blaze, a minor league baseball team in California.

Fans discovered Tara’s heroism after surveillance video capturing the selfless kitty’s bravery went viral. The astounding video blew-up the Internet, showing the world how a pet’s devotion is boundless. Read below for more on Tara the “Hero Cat’s” courageous act. — Global Animal

Tara the "Hero Cat" saves four year old Jeremy from dog attack outside their family's home in Bakersfield, CA./Photo credit: independent.co.uk
Tara the “Hero Cat” saves four-year-old Jeremy from a dog attack outside their family’s home in Bakersfield, CA. Photo credit: independent.co.uk

Los Angeles Times

Tara the cat, made famous in a YouTube video that shows it saving a 4-year-old boy from a dog attack in Bakersfield, has been tapped for another duty: throwing the ceremonial first pitch at a local minor league baseball game.

Hero Cat Bakersfield

Video footage of the cat ramming into and then chasing off the next door neighbor’s dog as it attacks the boy’s ankle went viral this week after it was posted by the boy’s father, Roger Triantafilo. Since then, Tara the cat has become a local hero, and will do the honors — with an assist from the Triantafilos — at a Bakersfield Blaze game on May 20.

Erica and Roger Triantafilo with their son Jeremy and cat Tara at home in Bakersfield, CA./Photo credit: latimes.com
Erica and Roger Triantafilo with their son Jeremy and cat Tara at home in Bakersfield, CA during an interview with Inside Edition. Photo credit: LA Times

Caught on what appears to be security surveillance video, footage of the incident has racked up millions of views on YouTube within the last few days. It starts with the dog wandering near the family SUV in the driveway where 4-year-old Jeremy is riding his tricycle. A few seconds later, the dog suddenly comes around the SUV and attacks Jeremy’s ankle, pulling him from the bike.

Tara the "Hero Cat" will throw out the first pitch at Tuesday's Bakersfield Blaze game./Photo credit: independent.co.uk
Tara the “Hero Cat” will throw out the first pitch at Tuesday’s Bakersfield Blaze game. Photo credit: independent.co.uk

Within seconds, Tara the family cat sprints into view and rams into the dog before chasing it away from Jeremy.

Soon after, the cat returns to the boy as he is aided by his mother.

A still photograph from the video shows Tara turning back toward the boy after ramming and chasing the dog away./Photo credit: KERO-TV
A still photograph from the video shows Tara turning back toward the boy after ramming and chasing the dog away. Photo credit: KERO-TV

Jeremy, who received stitches for a deep bite wound on his leg, hailed the cat’s save in an interview with KERO-TV Channel 23 in Bakersfield.

”Tara is my hero,” he told the station.

In an interview with “Inside Edition,” his father agreed, calling Tara a hero for putting “herself first.”

Read the full LA Times article here: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-tara-cat-minor-league-game-pitch-20140516-story.html

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