Scott Turner is a highly studious and obsessively well-ordered police investigator for the small northern California town of Cypress Beach. Bored with the lack of serious crime with his current work, Turner is set to transfer to a much better position in Sacramento, leaving fellow investigator David Sutton to replace him. Turner shows David around in the three days left before his transfer, meeting with long time friend Amos Reed for a final time. The two investigators are then called to the discovery of $8,000 found at the local beach - an unusual discovery for such a quiet community. That same evening, Amos is murdered by an affiliate of local seafood magnate Walter Boyett when Amos reveals his suspicions of Boyett's operations. Turner is alerted to the crime the following morning, ultimately resulting in Scott hesitantly taking in Hooch, Amos' pet Dogue de Bordeaux. Scott immediately takes Hooch to the new town Veterinary physician Emily Carson. Scott pleads with Emily to take in Hooch as he has no experience of handling such an animal before. However, Emily insists that Hooch will be good for Scott, who lives alone.