Cat that saved young boy wins 'Hero Dog' award

Video of courageous feline went viral

California Cat Wins 'Hero Dog' Award

And the award for 'Hero Dog of the Year' goes to... Tara the cat.

Yes, an adopted cat named Tara has made history by becoming the first feline to win the annual award given out by The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles.

In May 2014, Tara the cat fought off a dog that attacked her 6-year-old owner Jeremy Triantafilo as he rode his bicycle in the driveway of his Bakersfield home.

The animal welfare group says Tara body-slammed Scrappy, a chow-mix that lived next door, which ran out of his yard and grabbed Jeremy's leg and began shaking it from side to side.

Tara chased the dog back home. It was later put down. Jeremy got eight stitches, and security camera footage made Tara an international celebrity.

Video goes viral

The whole incident was captured on a home CCTV system and quickly went viral when the footage was posted online. It has attracted more than 650,000 hits on YouTube.

On Friday she was rewarded for her bravery by the animal shelter, which presented her with its 33rd annual gong.

President of the society, Madeline Bernstein said: "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."

In special recognition of her actions the word 'Dog' was removed from the trophy and the word 'Cat' etched in.

Jeremy, who is autistic, says Tara is his "hero".