Tara isn’t one of those cats; she earned her wealth through heroic deeds. Tara is short for the name “Zatara”, which was the name smugglers gave to Edmond Dantes in the Count of Monte Cristo. She achieved her fame when she rescued a small child from a neighborhood dog. She even inspired branded merchandise that brings in revenues of half a million dollars every year for her owners.
Tara is a tabby cat who lives in California; she was enjoying just another day in her kitty life when she had her brave deed recorded. Tara rescued a small child from a vicious and potentially fatal dog attack. The entire incident was captured on home surveillance videos and made news around the world. The cat was adopted by the Triantafilo family when she followed their parents home. After being taken in so mercifully the least Tara could do was to be loyal to her new found family.
It all happened in 2014, when Jeremy, the four-year-old child, was riding his bicycle in the driveway. A dog who was a mixed breed of Chow and Labrador Retriever jumped behind him and attacked his leg. Jeremy fell off of his bike; the attack continued until Tara jumped on the formidable dog and chased it away. Tara returned to Jeremy to make sure he was all right.
Jeremy’s leg had been cut open during the ordeal, but luckily his injuries were minor. The city of Bakersfield’s declared June 3rd “Tara the Hero Day” and a minor-league baseball team named “Bakersfield Blaze” invited Tara, with the assistance of her family, to throw the first ball of a game. The Cat Fanciers Association initiated the Hero Award in Tara’s honor. Many other awards followed, including Tara being named as the first grand marshal for the Bakersfield Christmas parade.
It almost goes without saying that the video of the rescue went viral, so much so that it became the first video in YouTube history to have 20 million views in just five days. As with any famous event, there is bound to be controversy. The 8 month old Labrador/Chow, named Scrappy, was quarantined for 10 days to determine whether he had rabies or not.
After the attack, websites posted protests and petitions demanding that the pup not be put to sleep. However, during the period of confinement, animal welfare experts classified the dog as a “vicious and dangerous animal” and he was not considered appropriate for adoption.
Tara vindicates the reputation of felines in the minds of people who often criticize cats as not having the same loyalty that dogs do. Tara proves that cats can be loyal to their humans and will help them in any way they can. Since the attack, Tara is still enjoying her celebrity. While she looks like an ordinary tabby, people are amazed by her unusually calm and sociable attitude.
She often travels to fundraisers, as far as New York City and doesn’t mind her carrier at all. Tara is very amenable to taking a leash, which is important because she goes on a good many outings. Her first adventure with a leash was out to a Bakersfield Blaze game where she was able to throw the first pitch (with some assistance). Erica and Roger Triantafilo often take Tara out for walks, especially after she has become recognized as a hero.
Tara is a good kitty in general, but she does have an irreverent sense of humor. She enjoys pouncing on her owners while they are sleeping. Unlike many cats, Tara is immune to the attractions of catnip and prefers chicken flavored treats. Contrary to the popular opinion that Tara dislikes dogs, she lives quite peacefully with the family dog and three children. She gets along with nearly everyone, human or animal, and enjoys traveling and socializing.