MIAMI, FL (CNN) - A South Florida homeowner got the shock of his life Wednesday when he found 4 1/2–foot alligator taking a dip in the family pool.
"I jumped back, I got the dog - that's the first thing I did," said Peter Lopez. "I was worried because we have a little 4-month-old puppy."
The home in West Miramar, FL sits on a lake, the likely route of the alligator. The pool is surrounded by a waist-high fence. Lopez snapped a few pictures before calling for help.
Miramar police were able to grab the gator and release it back into the Everglades.
Another family in Parkland is dealing with the sight of five gators in their backyard, putting a scare into the entire family.
Local gator expert Paul Beddard Jr. said cooler weather is likely to blame for the recent sightings.
"They're not really more active; they're just laying on land to heat up a little bit," he said. "Nine times out of ten they're more afraid of you then you are of them. Just don't approach them, and don't feed them. That's the No. 1 thing."