Downeast Medal Finals

December 2017

Downeast Medal Finals
Happy Holidays! Visit our website for more information about the Downeast Medal Finals. We welcome all questions, suggestions, and sponsorship: please email Ginger at .

Thank you to Riitta Fortier for making this great video from the 2017 Downeast Medal Finals! Check it out here.
Message from the President
I hope that everyone enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with family and friends. We at DMF are thankful for the wonderful support that we received this year from our sponsors and our exhibitors. 2017 had the most horses ever attending, the strongest support from sponsors large and small, the most ever support from trainers and farms, and best of all, the DMF tradition of a fun, educational, affordable final has grown even larger. Thank you all, without your support DMF wouldn’t happen! Thanks as well to our dedicated staff who work so hard to make DMF the best that it can be!
We are now starting to prepare for 2018. We will be celebrating our 10th anniversary with the DMF family and we want to hear from you as to any ideas you may have to help us! Please feel free to contact me with your ideas at .
One of the exciting things for 2018 is the Titan Chain and Welding scholarship. This scholarship will cover entries and stall up to $700.00!! This will be awarded based on need. The donors have asked for a short essay explaining what going to DMF means to them, and how they work to support their dream of riding. I am asking all trainers, parents and fellow riders to please help us to identify a rider struggling to afford finals, who is a hard worker and exhibits good horsemanship as well as good sportsmanship. Very often word of mouth is the best way to find someone who needs a little help. Please keep your eyes and ears open. Applications can be sent to and I will forward them on. Applications will be accepted now until September 1, 2018.
Many thanks again to all of you for a wonderful 2017, we look forward to a wonderful 2018 with all of you!

-Ginger Albert
Downeast Medal Finals Pro-Am Class
Each year at the Downeast Medal Finals, our Pro-Am class is a sure crowd pleaser and a great way to end another fun day of finals competition. The twelve pairs of amateurs and professionals showing in this class for DMF 2017 gave everyone a very exciting class to watch indeed. Judged on the riders’ seat and position as well as the correctness and effectiveness of the aids both the professional and the amateur ride the same horse. The amateur rides the first way of the ring. Then, following any necessary saddle changes, it is time for the professionals and the second way of the ring. Professionals will be asked to show at least one of the following: working trot rising including a lengthening of stride, working canter including a lengthening of stride and any additional tests the judge may require .
The DMF 2017 Pro-Am included a number of ‘additional tests,’ much to the delight of everyone watching! Shortly after the professionals settled into the tack announcer Shara Prieskhorn relayed the judges’ direction to ‘drop your stirrups please’ followed by the ominous ‘you may cross them in front of the saddle if you like,’ a sure sign that the real tests were coming right up! All eyes were on the ring as Judge Nancy Murphy challenged the group (still without stirrups) "rising trot please," "show a lengthening of stride please," and then from the walk, "counter-canter, all counter- canter please!" When all was said and done, Champions were Hayleigh B. Gambino and Andrea Laffey. Reserve Champions were Navaeh Smeeton-Cormier and Meaghan Hynes. The crowd definitely rewarded all twelve pairs and, of course, their wonderful horses with thunderous applause as another fun day at Downeast Medal Finals 2017 came to a close.
Red Maple Leaf Toxicity
By Dr. Kathy Samley

Red maple leaves (Acer rubrum) are toxic to horses. The fresh leaves themselves are safe, but they become toxic after the leaves have wilted. The wilted leaves can remain toxic for up to 30 days. Red maple leaf toxicity is common in the fall when the leaves begin to wilt and accumulate on the ground.
Clinical signs A 1000lb horse will develop clinical signs after ingesting at least 1.5 lbs of wilted red maple leaves. A toxic component of red maple leaves damages the horse’s red blood cells. The red blood cells eventually become lysed, which causes the horse’s packed cell volume (percentage of red blood cells in the blood) to decrease rapidly as the red blood cells are destroyed. Hemoglobin, a component of red blood cells, is filtered out by the kidneys into the urine and causes the urine to turn a dark red color. Hemoglobin is damaging to kidneys, leading to acute renal failure. Common clinical signs of red maple toxicity in horses are depression, jaundice, fever, dark red urine, and colic.
Diagnosis A physical exam is important to assess the status of the horse. Bloodwork and urinalysis can be used to confirm the diagnosis as well as assess how far the toxicity has progressed. Horses with hemolytic anemia due to red maple toxicity have hemoglobinemia (red-tinged serum), as well as signs of hemoglobin in their urine. Bilirubin will be elevated in the blood due to the hemolysis. Kidney values (BUN and creatinine) are often elevated depending on the amount of renal compromise. 
Treatment If you suspect your horse has ingested red maple leaves a veterinarian should be called as soon as possible. If in the acute phase, activated charcoal may be administered through a nasogastric tube in order to help absorb the toxins. In most cases, hospitalization is necessary as the horse usually requires close monitoring, IV fluids, and critical care. A blood transfusion is often necessary if the horse’s packed cell volume is extremely low. Intravenous fluids are important to diurese the kidneys if they are showing signs of damage from hemoglobin. Vitamin C, vitamin E, and selenium can help treat the oxidative damage from the toxins. 
Prognosis Prognosis is guarded to poor, as horses can develop many secondary complications including acute renal failure, colic, and laminitis. Hospitalization and intensive care provide the best possibility of recovery. Early diagnosis and treatment is critical.

Thank you to New England Equine Surgical and Medical Center and Dr. Kathy Samley for allowing us to reprint this article .
Thank you so much to our incredible sponsors who help make this show possible.
Become a Downeast Medal Finals Sponsor:
All levels accepted and appreciated! 
Visit  our website  for more information.
For more information, to list your show with Downeast qualifying classes, to be featured as a Downeast spotlight rider, or to become a sponsor, please email Ginger at .

Thank you to Spotted Vision Photography and Riitta Fortier for providing us with many wonderful photographs from 2017 Downeast Medal Finals.