Mr. E trips over Danny who is following a horn toad. Mr. E tells him toad following isn't in his job description. He tells Mr. E that it is part of his idea for a living desert museum which is a good money making idea. Mr. E thinks it is a good idea. Buddy interrupts to say he saw a roadrunner. Mr. E spots the toad, but he gets away.
Buddy and Jake spot the sheriff's car at the ranch. Jake tells Buddy they caught up to him. The sheriff and Mr. Ernst return and the sheriff tells Buddy that his dad will be covering for him while he has surgery. The sheriff gives Mr. Ernst a uniform, gun, and walkie talkie. Mr. E is sworn in and is given a police light. Mr. E waves goodbye and drops all his stuff in the dirt. Jake remarks that Uncle Ben is already starting to act as a cop. Buddy says he hopes it doesn't go to his head. We cut to Sheriff Ernst in full gear, writing Brad a ticket for parking a horse in a mounting and dismounting zone. Brad says she will fight the ticket and storms off. Mr. E tells Lucy he had to give a citation to a guest and she didn't take it well. Lucy suggests educating the public instead of penalizing them. Lucy notices that Mr. E's gun isn't in his holster instead it is a squirt gun. Mr. Ernst tells her that carrying around the real gun made him nervous. Lucy volunteers to give Mr. E an introductory lesson to firearms.
Lucy is showing Mr. E how to aim his gun. He goes to fire at the target and when the gun goes off Sheriff Ernst goes flying back. He hears ringing and thinks it is the telephone. They decide to take a break.
Danny is putting some cages together for his desert museum. Buddy comes out of the bunk with "Mr. Cactus Head". Jake sees the signs on the cages such as "Sidewinder and Armadillo" and asks if Danny found them yet. Danny tells him not yet because there is no point in catching them if he didn't have cages to put them in. Seeing how it is the only thing they have, Danny accepts Buddy's Mr. Cactus Head.
At lunch, Lucy and Melody see "Madame Sonja" gypsy fortune teller set up at a table. Lucy and Mel notice it is Mr. Ernst. Lucy asks him what he is doing. He states that he is undercover with a police sting operation. Sheriff Ernst has been looking at some little know felonies and in their county paying a fortune teller is illegal. He states that as soon as someone pays there are going to the slammer. Lucy tells him that what he is doing is entrapment which is against the law. A female guest runs out of her room yelling that she's been robbed, Mr. E and Lucy rush over to her. The guest states that her silver charm bracelet with her name engraved on it is missing from her room. She states that she left her bracelet on the table by the door and locked it. When she returned from biking it was gone, but the door was still locked. Mr. E thinks it might be an inside job. An older lady yells that her needlepoint is missing. Mr. E vows to catch the thief and lock them up.
Later in the day, Mr. E is trying to contact the office with his walkie talkie, but no one is there. He gets a hold of Marlene and tells her that the thief might have went through the desert and if that is the case they will have to call in National Guard for a helicopter search. He asks Marlene is she understands, but she is no longer there.
Danny, Jake, and Buddy are sitting on their bunk porch. Danny says that the thief is probably gone by now. Jake ponders that it might be one of them. Danny thinks it is doubtful since needlepoint and a charm bracelet that says "Vanderdibble" isn't worth much. Danny and Buddy go to hunt the desert salamander and other candidates for the museum.
In his office, Mr. E takes a strand of hair from Jake to send to the "boys in forensics". He needs a sample from everyone to compare with one found at the crime scene. Jake asks "doesn't the forensic team has more important things to worry about". Mr. E says it isn't the police crime lab it is the chemistry class over at the junior high. Jake can't believe that a summer school chemistry class is investigating the theft and he can't believe he is a suspect. Sheriff Ernst tells Jake he is investigating all the staff members about their whereabouts during the burglary. Mr. E ponders that Jake might be an impostor posing as his nephew. Jake tells him who would actually confess to being his nephew if it wasn't true. Melody comes in and Mr. E questions her and she starts to fumble her story. Buddy interrupts saying him and Danny caught the thief.
Outside, we find out the thief is a pack rat. Danny found the things while he was hunting. Jake says the pack rat probably got into the rooms threw a small hole. Mr. E sticks his finger in the cage and the rat bites him.
Mr. E says he will miss being sheriff. Melody arrives with dough nuts. Mr. E tells her that was his favorite part of the job. The real sheriff returns and tells Mr. E he is the standby sheriff. Mr. E goes to return his badge, but the sheriff says to hang on to it for next time. He says now that he has someone he can trust he might even take some vacation. The sheriff returns and give Mr. E a ticket that he forgot about for double parking.
At the unveiling of the desert museum, there is a barrel cactus, desert turtle, parakeet, snake, and a barn kitten. Mr. E says that is all they came up with. Danny tells him it takes years to create a good museum. Mr. E points out the snake is rubber. He also asks why there is a kitten. Danny tells him the kitten lives on the ranch and the ranch is in the desert. There is also a dead turtle. Mr. Ernst says he can't expect the guests to pay to see this stuff. Danny says the pack rat escaped, but he replaced him with skunk. Everyone runs, but Danny says that it is a stuffed skunk.