How long has the Meyer family been involved with animal care?
Kent’s grandmother, Loraine Meyer, remembers transporting her dogs by train because of gas rationing during World War II. Muzzles were required for canine rail travelers, and Loraine Meyer had a dog, a Boxer, that couldn’t walk and wear a muzzle at the same time. She carried him.
In addition to breeding and showing Boxers, Loraine Meyer was an obedience judge for 50 years. The American Boxer Club presented her with a lifetime achievement award for her work and dedication.
Dad and Mom
So naturally Grandma Loraine’s son, Brian, grew up with dogs. He met his future wife, Cindy, when both were working as apprentice handlers. Once they had completed their apprenticeships and married, Brian and Cindy Meyer began handling dogs on their own. It has been said that Kent, their son, was born in a show ring. Less than a decade later, in the mid 1970s, Brian and Cindy opened Meyer’s Kennel in Belvidere, Illinois.
Kent and Gwen
And the cycle began again: Kent met Gwen in Junior Showmanship. Following their marriage they continued to work at the Belvidere site and handle dogs. In 1996, Kent and Gwen took over Meyer’s Kennel and have since expanded the business to include a location in Roscoe, Illinois, and another in Deforest, Wisconsin, near Madison.
Kent has bred Whippets, although he has handled a vast array of breeds, including several top winning Briards and Bouvier des Flandres. Gwen began showing Irish Setters, but she now breeds Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers and gives them wonderful names, such as Reyem’s What’s Under My Skirt? and Reyem’s No Squattin’ On My Spurs. In 2010, she won The Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier National showing “Fogerty,” (Grand Champion Dundalk Put Me In Coach), owned by Carol Burdge and Barbara Zapf. Like Kent, Gwen has shown a wide variety of breeds.
Together with their staff, Kent and Gwen continue to share their lifelong love for all animals and pride themselves in offering the finest accommodations and services to dogs and cats. Whether feline or canine, Persian or Pekingese, the staff at Meyer’s treats every pet as if it were their own.