10/15/2012 at 05:25 PM EDT
Nearly six years ago, a Connecticut family rescued a dog named Duke from a shelter, arguably saving his life.
Last week, he returned the favor.
Jenna Brousseau and her husband were asleep on Oct. 7 when Duke burst into their room, jumped on the bed and began shaking uncontrollably. They decided to check on their 9-week-old daughter in her bassinet and discovered the unthinkable: she wasn't breathing.
"My husband called 911 and the ambulance came here, and it was because of our Dukie dog, who alerted us," Brousseau, of Portland, Conn., tells local channel WFSB-TV
. "If Duke hadn't, you know, been so scared, then we would have just gone to sleep."
Their daughter, Harper, was revived and is doing well. Now, Brousseau says she hopes their story will encourage others to take home a dog from a shelter.
"He's the perfect dog," she adds. "He was meant to be ours and meant to be hers."