Photo by Danny Fulgencio

When guests come to swim at Brandi Knott’s backyard pool, they are required to pass a swim test. Guests must swim the length of the pool, jump off the diving board and, finally, go down the slide.

This test reassures Cooper, Knott’s goldendoodle, that no one needs saving. Because he will in fact, attempt to save any human or animal who tries to swim in the pool.

“He won’t relax until they do it,” Knott says.

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Patrolling and making sure everyone is safe, Cooper spends most of his time in the pool. Since he was 8 weeks old, Knott says he’s been fascinated by swimming.

“I have pictures of him 10 weeks old floating in the pool,” Knott says.

Cooper typically swims with Knott’s 8-year-old son, Carter, and follows him around constantly, ensuring that he keeps from the harms or depths of the pool.

Just like any pool-goer, Cooper also enjoys laying out on lawn chairs and sun bathing.

“He’s very independent,” Knott says.

When Cooper isn’t swimming or laying out by the pool, he spends his leisure time watching TV with the Knott family.

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Photo by Danny Fulgencio

“It’s funny I’ve never seen a dog watch TV,” Knott says. “If any animal comes on TV he attacks at full speed. Barking, running up, jumping down, you can’t even watch ‘Secret Life of Pets,’ he goes nuts.”

While Cooper is protective of humans, he also protects any foster dogs that come through the Knott household.

“We’ve had three foster dogs this summer and he takes them under his wing right off the bat,” Knott says. “He’s always friendly to them and we go to the dog park and he watches them to make sure nobody messes with them.”

It comes as no surprise that Cooper’s sociable nature has resulted in a friendship with a backyard frog the family calls “Fred the fat toad.” He even brings Fred into the house on occasion and surprises the Knotts. “Him and the toad love each other,” she says.

Sounding like a character from a children’s movie, Cooper will continue to spend his days at the pool in his shark costume and be considered a “true life saver” to his family.