Conservation CATalyst acquired Mayke in 2012 to give her a second chance as a working detection dog, not for drugs or explosives, but for poop. Jaguar and ocelot poop (scat). Her job was to help biologist and handler Chris Bugbee locate and collect jaguar and ocelot poop, or scat, for scientific analysis. Considering there was only one known wild jaguar in Arizona, the famous El Jefe, and a few ocelots, this was a difficult assignment. But here is where Mayke has truly shined. Working with her partner and trainer Chris, she has long overcome her fear of trucks and her debilitating lack of confidence. She has trekked hundreds of miles throughout the Arizona wilderness. She bounds through streams, jumps over boulders, and climbs to the highest ridges.
She has come face to face with rattlesnakes, bears, bobcats, and mountain lions… and she loves every minute of it. The shy, trembling Mayke of old has been replaced with a strong, confident and dedicated researcher. In fact, she now claims the distinction of having located the first genetically-verified jaguar scats ever collected on U.S. soil. Her story is one of second chances, perseverance and success.