After a long battle with cancer, Midge Leitch, VMD, DACVS, a woman known widely as a champion for equine welfare issues, died Saturday.
Dr. Leitch retired from the world-renowned University of Pennsylvania’s New Bolton Center, where she worked in radiology. Trained as a surgeon she also spent time as a faculty member at New Bolton.
Dr. Corinne Sweeney, Associate Dean and Executive Director of New Bolton Center’s large-animal hospital said, “Midge was brilliant. She had that unique combination of book-smarts and street-smarts, with impeccable judgment. If you were wise, you would seek her advice, and if you were really wise, you would follow it.”
A member of the United States Equestrian Federation’s Equine Drugs and Medications Committee she also served USET’s equine athletes by traveling to the Seoul, Sydney, and Atlanta Olympics.
“It is a sad day for the horse world to lose such an intelligent, strong, horsewoman,” says Bonnie Navin, an equine lawyer that Dr. Leitch provided expert legal testimony on matters pertaining to veterinary medicine. “She was a wonderful devil’s advocate and an amazing educator.”
Dr. Leitch called attention to timely welfare issues with an emphasis on unwanted horses and the soring of Tennessee Walking Horses. She also led the American Association of Equine Practitioner’s efforts to create a white paper on the soring of Tennessee Walking Horses.
Earlier in Dr. Leitch’s career she worked in private practice and focused on sport horses.
Dr. Leitch’s charity of choice was the New Jersey based The Seeing Eye, the oldest existing guide dog school in the world. Instead of payment, she would often ask for a donation to the charity instead. If you would like to make a donation to The Seeing Eye in her memory, click here.
There are reportedly no immediate plans for a memorial service.