Who We Are
The Malinois Rescue League was founded in 2019 by a group of individuals from around the globe dedicated to the breed who have a fierce passion for protecting all animals from abuse, harm and neglect.
Inspired by the amazing story of Angel, a Belgian Malinois rescued in China from a dog meat truck with horrific facial injuries, who was adopted by Hollie Cornes, the MRL began as a goal to save one Mal named Junzi. Hollie posted the rescue of Junzi on social media wherein this poor Mal was being hoisted by his neck into a weighing crate by the dog butcher. Plush Bear’s Shelter was at the slaughter house that day and had agreed to save Junzi as well as many other pups.
The rescue of Junzi was viewed by 1000s of people, including Aloha McBride, who had recently contacted Hollie to understand more about the Angel’s history and the dog meat trade in China.
Having Mals herself for many years, Aloha was compelled to reach out to Plush Bear’s to sponsor Junzi’s care and eventual placement in a new home in the USA. That was on Oct 7, 2018. Fast forward 13 going on soon to be hundreds of Mals later the MRL focuses on rehabilitating and rehoming Mals in harm’s way throughout many countries.
Committed to the Cause
Since our founding in 2019, Malinois Rescue League has developed and grown in a positive direction. We’re very proud of the diversity of our team, and their abilities to contribute their own unique experience and skills to our rescue mission.
Founder of Malinois Rescue League, Aloha first stumbled across Junzi; a meat trade survivor through social media. With a strong passion for the breed and having owned malinois for over 20 years herself, Aloha made it her business to see that Junzi was rescued, and has since made numerous trips to China in order to see the safe rescue and placement of the malinois we save. Aloha has two malinois of her own to keep her sane (or crazy) in her household. Kala, one of our meat trade survivors, and Enzo keep her on her toes!
Co-founder of the rescue, Natasha fell in love with the malinois breed when her friend/ex-military dog trainer convinced her that she needed a malinois, and crushed her life long dream of having a German Shepherd. She found out about the Dog Meat Trade in China after being contacted by a young boy in China asking her if she could help. Before she knew it she was on a plane to China with a stranger (Aloha), and returned with several malinois. Natasha and Lemmy (her mali) studied at Michael Ellis School for Dog trainers and take an active role in rehabilitating our dogs and supporting our head trainer Kim.
Heading up the social media for the rescue, Vee and her malinois Mishka fostered a great bond together and her love for Mishka grew into a love for the breed. Through reading more about the breed and certain social media accounts (@wonkynosedwonderdog @helpbanyulin & @chimay_chouchou), Vee came across the horrific truth about their involvement in the meat trade. And after speaking with Aloha, knew she wanted to be involved with Malinois Rescue League as much as possible including eventually adopting. Vee lives with her tribe of pups; Makana, Mishka and recently adopted from Malinois Rescue League, Jenko.
Head Trainer @ MRL, Kim leads our training program. Kim has a malinois of her own, along with two dutch shepherds and a celebrity corgis who plays the role of Cheddar on the hit TV show Brooklyn nine-nine. She originally learnt about the rescue when Natasha convinced her to meet at LAX kennels to check out a malinois that MRL had recently saved. 24 hours later Kim was all in and continues to work hard to ensure each of our placements are successful and supported. You can find her working her dogs late into the summer evenings, or galavanting in the California mountains with one of her pups! Kim has a wealth of knowledge and experience in dealing with high drive working breeds and specializes in behavior modification, along with pet dog training within her dog training business. She has worked with several rescues in the past and we are so grateful she is here with us to keep all our mals (and owners) in line!
Audra McBride assists in Cali-based Logistics & International travel. She became involved in our first few trips to China through her sister Aloha. Being an animal lover, Audra was shocked to learn of the horrors happening to these dogs and was the first person to put her hand up and volunteer for more. When Audra isn’t busy helping MRL you can find her at the beach, playing board games with her kids, or being kept busy by her golden, Tucker, who works hard to create uber cute videos of himself to share with the world!
MaryKate DiSalvo became enamored with the Malinois Breed after her husband who was formally on Active Duty in the U.S. Army, would share stories about the military working dogs that he was privileged to work with.
When the opportunity arose for them to get their first Malinois named Xara 5 years ago, MaryKate began to immerse herself in learning as much as she could about the breed including following MRL on Instagram.
MaryKate is a firm believer in doing service oriented work so when MRL put out a call for volunteers to assist with social media, she gladly responded and began working with the team.
Since joining MRL, MaryKate has successfully launched our TikTok account which has steadily gained popularity and has also adopted her second Malinois named Nacho!
Tessa's love for the malinois came from her dad who reminded her to give back as the dogs give us so much. A dog trainer at The Canine Coach, Tessa is also a St Paul Dog Training Board Member, and holds weekly classes for aggression rehabilitation for dogs dangerous within her city. Tessa has two malinois of her own, a daughter who has self-trained her border collie and excels in agility, and still manages to find time fostering pups for us, coaching our foster and adopting families, and takes an active role in helping MRL continue to improve in how we operate. In her free time you can find Tessa hiking or relaxing with friends.