Florida golfer saves dog from alligator

Distracted the gator to free the dog
Posted at 10:40 AM, Feb 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-21 11:40:28-05

Florida golfer Lucky Copps lived up to his name recently when he jumped into a pond to save a friend's dog from an attacking alligator.

Copps was on the links with Carbon, a childhood friend's black lab he's been dogsitting. He looked away for a moment, and when he turned around, he saw Carbon swimming in the lake.

"Now we're all in trouble. Carbon is in the water swimming right at the gator. They were going right towards each other," Copps said.

The gator chomped down and had Carbon by the leg, so Copps jumped in headfirst to save him.

"I was just panicked, just freaked out. I knew that I had to distract that gator, I mean that was the only way to save the dog," Copps said.

"I knew we had to get that gator distracted, so I just jumped in."

He thinks the splashing did the trick. The gator let go, and Carbon was able to swim away. Copps wasn't out of the woods yet. "Now I'm you to me away staring at a seven-foot gator. Uh oh, it's my turn. That's what I said to myself, is uh oh, it's my turn."

"Lucky" lived up to his nickname. He backed away and ran out of the water once it was shallow enough. Then they were off to the ER.

Copps said the first weeks of recovery were rough for Carbon, but now he's doing much better and on his way to a full recovery.

"He's out running wide open now, it's hilarious watching him run with that cone on," Copps said.
Copps said some think he's crazy for jumping in, but others like dog lover Tammy Lewis applaud his bravery.

"Any animal in distress, even if a gator is there, I would have done the same thing. I know people think we're crazy, but it is what it is, you'd do it if it were your kid," she said.

The alligator has since been removed from the lake.

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