I'd like to see the link, IIRC some women in CT is running a program like that.
The advantage of the long-haired breeds is that it is easy for a swimmer to grab into the fur. The Newfs seem to go beyond that though, they are repeatedly seen to "instinctively" turn a victim face-up in the water, then seize a hand to pull them out of it. The webbed feet also help.
Years ago my friend & I conned my Newf off a sandspit (she didn't like the ocean, go figure) and when she finally realize she couldn't climb into my lap and that Massa was simply nuts...she took off for the high tide line and two us, standing, couldn't hold her in with a leash.
Then she settled in to swop and eat sand flies that came to check out her nose. Go figure, doggie brains. (UGH.) Dog, frog, they don't spell so good, sometimes they get confused.