Welcome to the newest member of the extended Rogers family, Cherrywood's
Chocolate Marshmallow aka "Shiva" owned by Alison Rogers
co-owned by Ann Rogers


Cherrywood Kennels
Grafton, OH 44044 | cell  440-328-5647 | cherrywoodleos@yahoo.com
25 Years of Photos

I do not breed HSDs but I cannot recommend them highly enough as a great breed!

"Cheeky", aka
Elfin's Easy Going at Cherrywood, Shiva's dam, came to live with us in
2010 from the well respected  kennel of Dr. Joanne Baldwin in VA.
Cheeky is our first
Havana Silk Dog and she is a great little ambassador for the breed, greeting each new day
with a passion for life. Smart, playful, very friendly and confident, we're looking towards
a very long and happy relationship with the breed.

I had thought about adding a small breed to our Leonberger pack for some time. I’ve
always loved having two distinct breeds at the same time because it’s so interesting to
watch the uniqueness of each breed. It keeps you on your toes by preventing you from
thinking that “a dog is a dog, is a dog.” Breeds all differ from nose to toes and definitely
in personalities and temperaments.

For over 20 years I have loved everything about raising, planning future generations,
breeding, whelping, nurturing, showing, etc., but it is simply a lot harder with a larger
breed, like our Leos, as we get older. I’ve thought about, met and worked with a lot of
small breeds over the years in my training school, and yet never found one I thought we’d
really want to live with. When I was introduced to the Havana Silk Dogs, by a friend of
ours, I realized they were a breed I needed to investigate further.

The Havana Silk Dogs, re-created from the genes of the original, old style Cuban dogs,
have much of the charm and wonderful sense of humor that the Havanese do. They are a
distinct breed with a different DNA profile however. Through selective breeding away
from the traits causing chondroplasia, dedicated HSD breeders have managed to control
and breed away from the 133 genes associated with many of the structural and health
problems that the Havanese breed has had to deal with since they came to the US from

The HSD is an elegant little dog, slightly taller and shorter backed than the Havanese,
with straight legs, finer bone, and a flatter coat. With their longer refined muzzle, and
dark, almond shaped eyes they will melt your heart. Watching them move through a show
ring or in your back yard with the gracefulness of a long neck and the beautiful tail up and
waving like a plume, they will touch your soul like a beautiful piece of artwork.

Certified Havana Silk Dogs have to pass a number of required health tests as well as  
structural evaluation before they can be bred. Please understand that just because a
human or a dog does not "have" a disease, does not mean that they do not carry the gene
for it! Like the Leonberger Club of America the HSDA has kept health right up front with
type and temperament in their goals for producing quality dogs.

The look and the size of these little dogs:  Cheeky is 10.6 lbs. and 10" tall
which is about average for the Havana Silk Dog Breed. These dogs  have a beautiful, silk-
like coat  which needs to be groomed regularly or may be kept in a puppy cut if you are
not going to be showing your Silk. They are also a low- shedding breed. They are not
yappy little dogs, although they will bark when they are happy or someone comes to your
door.  Cheeky has some very interesting vocalizations when she talks to us, but Silks are
not usually nuisance barkers. They are portable, fitting easily into their carriers in the
backseat of your car for trips and just as easily into their carriers under the seat on a
plane. That means they can go on vacation with us a lot easier than our Leonbergers can!

Silk dogs are eager to learn but also on the independent side and may not always be  
dependable off leash in an unfenced area simply because of their curiosity level. They are
very agile and would excel in agility and rally obedience where they can have fun
while working.  Cheeky loves jumping up on Kevin’s lap while he's trying to read the
paper and draping herself over the arm of a warm chair or snuggled up on the couch next
to me when I’m reading. She follows me around a lot but she’s not constantly demanding
attention which is a plus. They are more apt to go off to investigate a fallen leaf first,
than to come when you call them. They definitely need a fenced in area that is secure
enough for a small breed. They are
very fast, love to run and very determined to get
where they are going!

HSDs also are long-lived. Cheeky’s grandsire lived to be 15, and her sire to be 14. That is
about twice the lifespan of a giant breed.

The HSDs, are great apartment dogs as long and can get their exercise by zooming
around even a small home. Many owners train the Silks to “potty-parks” somewhat similar
to a cat’s litter box and skip the fun part of having to take the dog out when it is pouring
or freezing. Another plus if you are in a fifth floor apartment!  Housebreaking smaller
breeds can take longer than larger breeds because they have smaller bladders and can't
wait as long and a potty-park is a real help. Cheeky is trained to go outside but in bad
weather we use the alternate potty-park. Win, win.

Some individuals within the breed have a sensitivity to vaccines and therefore we try
to give as few shots as are necessary in our section of the country. Our vet is also very
helpful and will do yearly titers to check on Cheeky’s status.

The breed is not a good choice for young children who may unintentionally hurt the
puppy by falling on it or trying to pick it up.  Silks really are best suited to homes with
older children. They are good with other dogs and animals if you socialize them well and
they love human company just as much. Cheeky lives with six, one hundred and thirty
plus pound Leonbergers. The Leos are very careful where they step  and play gently with
her. She loves snuggling up to them in cooler weather. (See photo of Sassy and
Cheeky above.)

There has not been a day in my life since she came to live with us that Cheeky has not
made me smile. She is an inherently sweet girl, always ready to play or go for a walk
when you ask her. At 7 now, we hope she will be with us for a long time.

Go to Cheeky's
CHIC page  to see her health tests.  I have no future HSD litters planned
but there are current litters announced on the
HSD website.