About Karin

I have lived in the Algarve since 1999 with my husband and two grown up sons. I work full time as a dog instructor and dog behaviourist with clients all over the Algarve and I love my work.  I was recently a speaker at an animal cruelty prevention seminar ran by Safer Communities Portugal.

At home, we have a mixed breed family of dogs plus Snoopy and Abbe two Assistance/Therapy Dogs (please see 'Assistance Dogs' page for more information.)

Apart from being a dog trainer, I help some of the dog charities with socialising and training puppies before they are re-homed in Portugal and other European countries. It is such a short and important time in a puppies life from birth to 12-14 weeks and without proper socialisation, there is the possibility of fear and other issues later on in life.

More About Karin

I have always had a love for animals, from as far back as I can remember. As a child I spent my summer holidays in the countryside of Sweden and loved looking after the farmer’s rabbits and kittens. I would follow the farmer and watch intently as he milked the cows and fed the pig. There wasn’t a day went by without me dreaming of having a pet of my own.  

Soon enough, this childhood dream was fulfilled and through the years I had many different pets. Most of them were welcomed by my parents, although some of them were sneaked into my room!

A much bigger dream was fulfilled in December 2012 – meeting Africa’s animals!  I volunteered at Makuni Big 5 Livingston conservation project in Zambia, where they take animals that may otherwise be extinct, allow them to breed and then let their offspring go to a national park to become “wild” before being released into their natural habitat. This was a truly amazing experience and I worked closely with the elephants, cheetahs, white and yellow lions and the desert linx – caracol.

My Training

Cilla Danielsson Hundens Hus Stockholm


Fernando Silva EDUCACAO Cascais


Dr Doolittle Aubrey Fins


Karen Pryor -  Dog Behaviourist, Marine Biologist

Per Jensen - Ethologist, Scientist

Kent Svartenberg - Ethologist, Dog Instructor

Szusa Veresza -Agility

Malin Kvist - Agility


Dog Instructor - Hundens Hus, Sweden

Dog Behaviourist - Hundens Hus, Sweden

Dog Interpreter - Hundens Hus, Sweden

Assistance Dog Instructor - Pawsitive Dogs

Guide Dog Trainer - Alan Broks, UK

Orientation and Mobility Instructor - Emmelie Reinson, Romania

Workshops & Seminars attended:

Victoria Stillwell

Dog Behaviour

B.A.T & C.A.T

Dog Language Interpretation

Pet Behaviour  (with Dr Gary Landsberg, Dr Goncalos Graca de Silva and Eduarda Pires)

Trauma workshop

Per Jensen

Kent Svartenberg

Karen Pryor


Anti hunting

Clicker Training

Chicken Camp

Disc Dog

Dock Diving

First Aid


Rally Obedience


Chantarelle Dogs (mushrooms found in Scandinavia)

Tellington Touch with Alex Wilson UK , Daniela Zurr Germany

Some of the cheetahs had come to the centre from private owners who no longer wanted their pet..... yes, they were pets and were used to walking on a leash. However, they are never truly tame, and could do a lot of damage if they so wished, which I was to find out. One day on our walk with the cheetahs, I ran ahead to take a photograph.  I checked and thought I was passing the young male, but it was in fact the older female (they look very similar).  This was my mistake. She pounced on my leg and at the same time the handler lost the leash. I still have the scars of the 4 inch claw scratch on my calf and a claw puncture on my knee.

Most days were lovely and peaceful in this Garden of Eden and life was good.  Would I go back? Oh yes! Although the next time I would take my clicker and train them to do fun things and also not to run away when it’s vaccination time!

If you would like more information about being a volunteer with less scary animals, contact me at karin.pawsitivedogs@gmail.com

We are always looking for short and long term volunteers to help with basic training for shelter dogs.  This increases their chance of finding a fur-ever home.