SXM Paws, Dog Shelter, Non Profit Organization


Animal lovers looking to help St. Maarten/St. Martin’s stray dog population can help by fostering or adopting, escorting rescues to their forever homes, volunteering, or donating funds, treats, food, toys, or accessories.


By Danielle de Windt

SXM Paws is a NONPROFIT organization dedicated to helping stray island dogs find loving homes. The organization relies on a network of fellow animal lovers to help rescue and care for the many dogs left on the streets of St. Maarten/St. Martin.


In 2019, SXM Paws opened a small no-kill shelter to house rescue dogs until their forever home is found, whether on island or abroad.


The shelter is more of a “doggie country club,” says longtime volunteer Kathy Blasberg, as SXM Paws lets dogs out of their kennels during the day so they can run around, play, explore, and interact with both humans and animals in order to socialize them.


SXM Paws has a visitors bench for those who just want to love on the coconut retrievers that call the shelter home. Visitors are more than welcome to bring treats, play, and cuddle to their hearts’ content, Blasberg says. Be prepared to fall in love with one of the island dogs, otherwise known as coconut retrievers. These mixed-breed dogs are resilient and loving and adapt very well to any home in any country, making them a better memento of your trip than any souvenir.


Visitors are also invited to volunteer with SXM Paws during their vacation. There is always plenty to do like cleaning, feeding, socializing, and leash training. Animal lovers can also take dogs for a walk nearby or even take them on a hike or to the beach.


If you are returning home to the United States, Canada, or Europe soon, you can help escort a coconut retriever to their forever family. SXM Paws will take care of everything — all you have to do is show up at the airport and accompany the dog on its way home.


Craving some puppy loving? Come by the adoption center to volunteer or meet the lovely rescue dogs. SXM Paws is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays and from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.



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