Conservation Canines

CK9: Main CK9 Odor Detections CK9 Training Facility Meet the Dogs Sponsors

Bud Marks and CK9 Frehley

Our history

Use of dogs to locate wildlife scat over large areas was pioneered in 1997 by Dr. Samuel Wasser, Director of the Center for Environmental Forensic Science. Dr. Wasser collaborated with Sgt. Barbara Davenport, Master Canine Trainer with the Washington State Department of Corrections, to modify narcotics detection dog methods to train dogs to locate scat from threatened and endangered species.

Since then our Center’s Conservation Canines program has been non-invasively monitoring a diverse array of threatened and endangered species around the world, including, tigers, orcas, fishers, spotted owls, bears, wolves, jaguars, and even Pacific pocket mice. Our training methods are thoroughly described and validated in the following publication:

Rescue dogs

Frehley, a border collie, wears a safety vest and is in mid-jump for a ball

The ideal scat detection dog is intensely focused and has an insatiable urge to play. Their obsessive, high-energy personalities make them difficult to maintain as a family pet, so they often end up at a shelter. The single-minded drive of these dogs makes them perfect Conservation Canines! They are happy to work all day traversing plains, climbing up mountains, clambering over rocks and fallen trees, and trekking through snow, all with the expectation of reward – playing with their ball – after successfully locating wildlife scat. We rescue these dogs and offer them a satisfying career traveling the world to help save numerous other species.


We are not accepting new dogs into our program at this time. Please feel free to inquire at a later time.



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