Stephanie Capkovic – Owner and Instructor

Stephanie Capkovic has been a breeder of West Highland White Terriers (Westies) under the Bella Vista name since 1989. In 1994, Stephanie decided to take her new puppy, "Amelia", to an agility class just for fun. Agility was fun and soon they were both hooked on this dog sport. In 1996, Stephanie became an agility instructor for the Obedience Training Classes of Harrisburg and later founded Bella Vista Training Center in 1998. While Bella Vista was founded initially for dog agility training, the types and variety of classes soon increased to include obedience, rally, tricks, canine good citizen and focus. Seminars and workshops are also held on a regular basis since there is always something either new to try, something to train or re-train or just another excuse to have fun with your dog.

While terriers, West Highland White Terriers to be exact, are Steph’s favorite, she has also owned, trained and competed with a Yorkshire Terrier and a Portuguese Water Dog in obedience, agility, freestyle and rally. Currently in addition to the Westies, Steph has a Scottish Terrier and a Cesky Terrier that she is competing with in rally, agility, obedience, barn hunt, lure coursing and earthdog. She also has a rescue Sealyham Terrier named Lena.

Stephanie breeds Westies under the kennel name of Bella Vista. While performance sports are her passion, on a rare occasion you will see her in the breed ring showing a Westie.

In addition to being the owner of the Bella Vista Training Center, Stephanie is also a judge for a variety of dog sports. She is an agility and earth dog judge for the American Kennel Club, and an agility judge for the Teacup Dog Agility Association and UKI. Stephanie is also a rally judge for World Cynosport Rally and UKC. In 2011, Steph became a judge for the Barn Hunt Association.

Needless to say, Steph is addicted to dogs and dog sports. In 2008, Steph made the decision to make her passion her full time job. She now gets to train, board, and groom dogs as her career. Bella Vista is currently home to Steph, Rob Kripaitis and their assorted pack of canine companions. There is never a dull moment at Bella Vista... since “life is merrier with terriers” (and all dogs)!