This is my adorable little black dog, Maho. Maho was rescued at 8 weeks old from the beaches of Puerto Rico and shipped to a shelter in Boca Raton, FL where I adopted him in December, 2008. He just turned two and is a very well traveled little dog - except not to St. John, yet.
Maho spent this past summer up in Acadia National Park in Maine with me and while visiting the little island of Frenchboro, an older woman heard me call his name and asked if he was named after Maho Bay. When I answered yes, she went on to tell me that 15 years ago her daughter had spent her honeymoon at Maho Bay and on her return, she and her husband adopted a German Shepherd puppy and had also named him Maho. He had, unfortunately, died of old age during the winter of 2010. I guess I was not the only one who thought to name a dog Maho. So much for originality!
I have been coming to St. John since 1967, when I honeymooned at Caneel Bay and continued going there yearly for many years with my first husband.. If I had adopted a female dog, I would have named her Caneel. As my kids started to get older and Caneel Bay too expensive for 2 rooms our family started staying at Maho Bay in the early 80's when the green canvas tents were few and the island was still essentially unfound. Both of my children have been to Maho Bay numerous times and as many times as we have all been there, and even with all the new homes dotting the once pristine hillsides, we all still love the island. I try to get down there at least twice a year and sometimes more often when I can. I was just there with my sister, Jill, who I introduced to St. John at least 30 years ago.
Maho is definitely a great dog and if I could bring him down to St. John with me, I would. He looks like a small Black Lab and has the same temperament as a Lab. So many people ask me about his breed that I have named him a South African Pygmy Retriever and most people go for it. He loves to swim, retrieve, loves people, and especially loves children. He weighs about 30 pounds and is the perfect size dog with a great personality.
Acadia National Park in Maine is very dog friendly and I have brought him up there for the past 2 summers. He can swim on almost all the ocean beaches and is allowed in all of the lakes and hiking trails and carriage roads up there. Dogs are allowed on all ferries to out islands and can even go on the National Park bus that travels around Mt. Desert Island. The area is as close as I have ever seen to the Virgin Islands and people who love St. John also find themselves in Maine during the summer as it is a very similar environment. John D. Rockefeller certainly knew what he was doing when he preserved St. John and also Mt. Desert Island and Acadia National Park.
I live in Florida and it is too hot for him down here in the summer so the lucky puppy gets to summer in Maine. I always remind him that he could be scrounging the beaches in Puerto Rico for food and instead he winters in Florida and summers in Maine. He looks happy so I guess he realizes how lucky he is.
(below is a picture of Maho the day he was adopted 12/5/08, notice the Maho Bay towel! Also pictured is Maho on summer vacation in Maine this year)