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Family of cat hero that saved child from dog speaks out on 'Today'

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Even if you’re a die-hard dog lover, the latest YouTube sensation, starring a fiercely fearless feline that fends off a dog after it attacked a child, could convert you into a cat lover. More than six million people have viewed the video in just 24 hours, making it the newest viral hit on the Internet. On May 15, the thankful and lucky parents appeared on “Today” to talk about their family’s harrowing experience that could have turned deadly if not for the quick actions of their family cat.

The hero in the video is undoubtedly Tara, a stray cat that was adopted by the family, that fearlessly pounced to rescue Jeremy, a four-old child from Bakersfield, during an unprovoked dog attack. While riding his trike in the driveway, Jeremy Triantafilo was attacked by a neighbor’s dog that bit into the child’s leg and tore him off his bike. Almost immediately, the family’s cat sprung in to action and staged a counter attack on the dog to defend the young and helpless boy.

As posted by NBC News, Jeremy’s parents spoke with “Today” on Thursday morning concerning the scary incident that has captured the attention of the entire country. “It’s honestly just a blur,” mom Erica Triantafilo stated on air on May 15. “I just remember hearing him and the next thing I know, I see my cat flying out of nowhere, onto this dog, and just remember trying to get my son and get the dog away and back in its yard, away from both of us that it was trying to attack.”

After the attack, dad Roger decided to check their home surveillance video to see exactly what happened to their son. On Thursday, he told “Today” viewers that he was amazed how their cat defended their son and stated about their brave cat, “She put herself out there without worrying if she was going to get bit or injured herself.” He added, “I think that dog did not know what hit him.”

After the dog attack, Jeremy’s two lacerated bite marks received ten stitches. During the family’s interview on “Today,” the child slept peacefully in his mother’s lap. To watch the Triantafilo family interview about the cat rescue on "Today," head to YouTube. As of noon on May 15, “My Cat Saved My Son” video has been viewed 6.2 million times and the number is rising rapidly. Click here to see kitty Tara’s brave stance against a neighbor’s dog.

Derry London from WLTX called the cat a true hero because “it faced down its natural nemesis.” Cheers to Tara, the bravest feline in the country and the newest Internet sensation.

“Today” airs every weekday morning on NBC. Anchors include Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie, Al Roker, and Natalie Morales.

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