Hello! I am Tina Olsen with Starlette French Bulldogs. I’m proud to be a Breeder/Owner Handler. We have achieved AKC Breeder of Merit status and are proud to be responsible breeders. We follow OFA health testing in our program. We are proud to be members of the French Bulldog Club of America and we have two generations of dogs that have received their ROM with FBDCA. That’s lots of hard work. Frenchies are very competitive breed to show in conformation—always a challenge. It’s a challenge to build and hold majors. I truly love the French Bulldog and choose to focus on this breed—always and forever. I am always trying to learn better skills and I am willing to help anyone who might need a bit of help. I want to help and preserve well-bred, happy, and healthy French Bulldogs. Also, I want to educate the public against non-standard colors. With the help of a friend, Shelia Smith, I started an up-and-running French Bulldog Club of Colorado. I would like to give credit to my biggest supporter and partner, my husband, Dan Olsen. Without him, I would not be here.
1. When were you first introduced to the sport of purebred dogs? To your breed?
Tina Olsen: I was introduced to the sport and to the French Bulldog in the early 1990s.
2. How many years in dogs? How many as an Owner Handler? As a Breeder?
Tina Olsen: I’ve been in dogs for many years: 15 as an Owner Handler and 20-plus as a Breeder.
3. Do you attend show handling classes? Have you attended any handling seminars?
Tina Olsen: Yes, I did attend show handling classes and handling seminars.
4. Have you found virtual learning tools to be helpful? Classes? Videos? Websites? Social Media?
Tina Olsen: I have found these tools to be somewhat helpful.
5. Do you compete in the National Owner-Handled Series? Are rankings important to you?
Tina Olsen: Yes, I compete in NOHS, and the ratings are starting to become important.
6. How important is the Bred-By Class to you? How important are Specialties?
Tina Olsen: The Bred-By Class is VERY important to me. Now that Specialties are getting closer, yes, they are important too.
7. Is it a challenge to compete with your breed as a Breeder/Owner Handler?
Tina Olsen: Yes, it is a challenge to compete as a Breeder/Owner Handler with Frenchies.
8. Are you intimidated by the Professional Handlers? By the Judges?
Tina Olsen: I’m not always intimidated by the Professional Handlers, but sometimes I know it’s just a fact. I’m sometimes intimidated by the newer Judges.
9. Who have been your mentor(s) as an Owner Handler? As a Breeder?
Tina Olsen: I’m self-taught, but Kathy Clayton has been a great mentor and friend. As a breeder, my vet and multiple people have been mentors.
10. How important is the Breeder/Owner Handler to the future of the dog sport?
Tina Olsen: I feel I want to show what I breed as a guide/tool to our program.
11. What are your goals as an Owner Handler? As a Breeder? Is there a milestone that has eluded you?
Tina Olsen: My goals are putting conformation titles and Top 20 on dogs that we breed. As a breeder, my goals are the same. I’m still looking for some Group #1 wins.
My goals are putting conformation titles and Top 20 on dogs that we breed.
12. Is there a funny story that you can share about your experiences as a Breeder/Owner Handler?
Tina Olsen: Once, about 15 years ago, I showed a pup and a received 5-point major. Thinking he was just a “filler,” I stood and looked at the judge like, “Are you sure???” He was just supposed to help build a major!
Barbara Canduff, a very dear friend and fellow owner who is above and beyond supportive and keeps me in check.