Iron Dog Algarve

Who should I trust?

At Iron Dog our mission is to help raise awareness of training dogs and owners in the most effective, ethical and balanced way. Balance is the keyword, in everything we do. We sincerely believe that a dog is much more than a mere pet and, therefore, with the help of our trainers, we will teach you how to better enjoy your friend’s company. Come and learn how to stimulate him with new challenges and deepen and strengthen your bond! Live an amazing experience.

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animals trained per year

Trainer João Paulino

He is the president of Iron Dog Algarve since its foundation and the oldest trainer of the school. After working 12 years as a K9 security guard for the largest security company in the country, and after numerous training in the area, and participating in 3 world championships representing Portugal, trainer João Paulino is still one of the rare Certified Trainers of Dogs of Dangerous or Potentially Dangerous Breeds, recognized by the Portuguese Government. João Paulino mainly invests in training and experience, especially in the area of sports training, in multiple countries, and with various breeds. His main interest is in sports competition in the areas of IGP, Obedience and Mondioring. João Paulino is an extra and official PGI plotter and a national extra for Mondioring. For him, singing Portugal’s anthem on a world podium is every competitor’s dream.

And so, these are some of the most important moments lived in his career:
– Representative of Portugal in the WUSV world championship (France, 2014)
– Representative of Portugal in the world championship ATIBOX WW – IPO1 World Winner! (Spain, 2018)
– IGP vice-champion of Portugal with a Boxer (2020)
– Representative of Portugal in the WUBOX world championship, 3rd place on the podium, (Germany, 2020)

In an environment and activity that still lacks regulation in the sector, the trainer argues that the best way for professionals to show the quality and breadth of their knowledge is through the transparency of competitions. Nationals and internationals. Distinction and excellence is achieved by entering the field and on an equal footing with other trainers, and putting all the knowledge into practice, proving the quality of training according to the achievements obtained. João Paulino also insists on directing the best students to the competition team, which represents the Iron Dog Algarve school in several national competitive calendars. At the same time, in addition to sports, João Paulino’s work stands out above all in solving severe behavioral problems (many in very serious situations) but also in training the dog from an early age to become balanced, happy and well-integrated adults. in current society.

João Paulino is lucky to have trained and trained with some of the best names in the canine training landscape worldwide:

– Toni Tur (SPAIN)
– Marko Koskensalo (FINLAND/CANADA)
– Martin Pejša (CZECH REPUBLIC)
– Dani Ruano (SPAIN)
– Michael Praig (AUSTRIA)
– Viorel Scinteie (GERMANY)
– William Langlois (FRANCE)
– Marek Urban (CZECH REPUBLIC)

Annually, Iron Dog Algarve organizes 4 to 5 sports competitions in the Algarve region.

Trainer Nuno Nunes

Trainer Nuno Nunes is from Tavira, where he founded his own dog training school INCRÍVEIS TAVIRA.


Nuno teaches at the same time at Iron Dog Algarve and is part of our competition team, representing our school in two different modalities: Obedience and IGP. However, the trainer has even represented Portugal in the Mondioring world championship. Nuno started his career as a dog trainer in 2013. Since then, he has helped countless families to better understand their dogs. From basic obedience for puppies to solving behavioral problems, or starting the binomial in the competitive aspect, Nuno is a very multifaceted trainer who quickly adapts to different types of dogs and situations. Currently, Nuno competes with Belgian Malinois shepherds but likes to work with any dog, with or without defined breed.


Nuno teaches in Portuguese and English, and we strongly believe that he is one of the youngest and most promising dog trainers in Portugal. You can read more about Nuno and his work on his school’s website: INCRÍVEIS TAVIRA.

Trainer Luisa Bartolomeu

National Champion of Obedience 2021, organized by the Portuguese Kennel Club. Born in Portugal, she emigrated with her family to France when she was still a child. She has now returned to her roots, after a lifetime of working abroad, to be able to do what she enjoys the most: training dogs and helping owners to achieve a healthy relationship with their dogs. In France, Luísa began her long competitive life in 1979, dedicating herself mainly to the modalities of Agility and Obedience, but also passing through the IGP, Ring, tracking, and even truffle hunting. Currently, she competes for Iron Dog Algarve at the highest level of the Obedience modality, in the national Obedience championship. Throughout her life, and in different countries, she has learned different methods and working tools, and she maintains the taste for constantly continuing to learn and evolve her canine training methodology.

Over the years, she has fallen in love with different breeds (German Shepherd, Scottish Shepherd, Belgian Shepherd Tervueren and Schipperke) and has helped countless owners to train their dogs and understand how to better communicate with them. Luísa specialized in France as a «Basic Education Instructor», «Puppies School Instructor», attended the «Group and Individual Socialization Course», «Preparation for Competition» and was also responsible for several competition groups. It was also thanks to competition that Luísa knows much of Europe.

Trainer Denis Kibritjian

Denis has been a professional firefighter all his life. It was also at the fire department that he began his passion for dog training. There he had contact and experience with the canine search and rescue team in rubble and rescue in dangerous environments. Ten years after joining the fire department, Denis was already participating in several rescue maneuvers, from helicopter to water rescue, with Belgian Malinois and German Shepherd dogs. Exceptional experiences that made him fall even more in love with the world of canine training. His first working dogs were a border collie “Tintin” and a Belgian Malinois shepherd “Diego”, which he trained in Auvergne, France. In 2012, he started competitive training at a canine training club, developing his interest in Agility.

In 2014, he started competing in this modality with his Schipperke “Jengo” with which he continued to the maximum level. Two years later, he started the same dog in the Obedience discipline, reaching class 2. In 2018 he obtained his French certificate as “MEC1 Dog Educator”. Currently, Denis, together with Luísa Bartolomeu, has 2 Belgian Tervuren shepherds competing in the national obedience championship and two Schipperkes, taking advantage of the “renovation”. In 2020, Luísa and Denis left France for Portugal and joined as trainers and competitors at Iron Dog Algarve.

Sara Alves - Daycare and Hotel Management

Sara Alves has a degree in Communication Sciences, worked a decade full time dedicated to journalism and currently still works as a freelancer, however, she is completely dedicated to Iron Dog Algarve. She is responsible for marketing and communication for the Iron Dog Algarve brand, and is the club’s vice president. During the time she’s not training and developing activities with dogs, she is probably creating and managing online content, social networks, answering phonecalls and emails, sorting and scheduling classes, managing the daycare and hotel, and establishing several partnerships with other entities. Sara is also part of the school’s IGP competition team and is the creator of the affix “of Iron Kingdom” dedicated to breeding German Shepherd and Boxers working dogs. In her spare time, she likes to exercise the dogs in the pool, and improve their physical condition, being particularly interested in the topics of canine training, rehabilitation and animal physiotherapy.

Ricardo Lima - Daycare and Hotel Management

Ricardo Lima, born in the city of Faro, is the latest collaborator to the Iron Dog Algarve team. He has been interested in animal life from a very early age, having worked with several exotic species of all animal classes, working both in animal welfare and trainer.

Ricardo graduated in Animal Science and Technology and holds a master’s degree in Conservation Biology from the University of Évora. Following his academic career, he had the opportunity to carry out internships in some animal parks, including the Monte Selvagem Animal Reserve (Lavre) and the Wisbroek Research and Development Center (Holland). Despite working mostly with birds since 2017 (Zoomarine Algarve), he currently shares the responsibility for the daily management of our school’s, and is intensively training to start competing with a German Sheperd and become a certified dog trainer.

Iron Dog

Achieve the relationship you’ve always dreamed of with your dog. At Iron Dog Algarve we show you how you can get the dog you want.

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