Bellawood is a dream come true for the entire Guerke family. We are pet lovers, and we bring that passion for animals to work with us every single day. We like to refer to our four-legged guests as our "borrowed babies" and treat all of the dogs and cats that visit us as if they were our own.
Erin has nearly 20 years in dog sport in the areas of AKC conformation, obedience, agility, rally and Schutzhund. Prior to her involvement in dog sport, she spent her life
training and showing horses all over the East Coast in several different styles. When she moved away for college, dog sport was a natural evolution to that passion. Throughout her adult life Erin has enjoyed all things dog and prides herself on acquiring skills and knowledge from a myriad of sources to apply to her own training. She continues her education in dog behavior and training constantly while learning from some of the best trainers in the world and is always working to add more "tools" to her "toolbox". Her passion for dog behavior and a balanced training and communication approach as well as a wide range of training methods allows her to pull from a vast pool of knowledge when handling even the most challenging dogs. Erin has been lucky enough to have the love of her life and partner, Casey, by her side in all of her escapades since 1994 when they met in high school. Erin is also still currently employed as the Controller for a local school district and has been employed with the State of Delaware since 1996. In her spare time, Erin serves on the Board of Directors for the Wilmington Kennel Club as well as the Citizens Budget Oversight Committee for the Newark Charter School and still trains and trials her German Shepherd Brew in Schutzhund. Erin is responsible for much of the process and procedure development as well as the social media.
Casey has been a life long pet owner and lover. Ever since he met his wife, Erin, in his freshman year of high school, he has been a partner to help care for and train both horses and dogs. He always exudes patience and care when dealing with any animal in his family or his care and although he tries to fight it, always end up sneaking treats to them or letting them snuggle in bed or on the couch. Casey has always been a lifelong student and loves learning and growing. This has been seen in his professional development over the years. With a Bachelors degree in Business Management with a minor in Finance as well as an MBA with a focus on Management Information Systems and is also a "fully stacked" Java programmer. Prior to purchasing Bellawood Kennels, Casey was a Business Technology teacher. Before he began teaching, he had a background as a bank manager, an adjunct college professor and served as a business and financial consultant. He will be overseeing the business management, marketing and general operations at Bellawood Kennels.
Ava has a natural gift when it comes to dogs. Her calm, sweet demeanor can tame the wildest of animals. Ava especially likes dealing with our insecure and challenging dogs and quickly gains their trust under her parents close guidance. She will be helping with pet care and learning to bathe and groom while balancing her studies at Newark Charter School Jr. High. Ava has ambitions of becoming a surgeon one day and already works hard and is focused on her goals.
Isabelle is our resident greeter. If she isn't in school, its rare she doesn't greet guests as they come in the door! Her bubbly personality makes her a favorite of many of our guests. As part of her studies, she can often be found tucking in our guests with a bedtime story and cookie. Izzy dreams of one day becoming "a dog trainer like my Mom" and is a huge fan of the Dog Whisperer!