It's official. You’re preoccupied with your horse’s poop.

We expected our March cover story would be a popular one, but it’s always fun when people like/comment/read/share/make more amusing remarks about a story than we expect. Relative to the story, our team also released a fun related fact graphic and shared it on Pinterest and Facebook, etc. (If you’re a Pinterest user or a Facebook fan of TheHorse.com and are signed in, you should be able to follow these links). It’s already been shared more than 500 times. Who knew poop could be so popular?

I realize, of course, that, more than any odd obsession, this is likely an indicator that you simply hone in on the minute details and the specifics of your horse's health statushis manure being one indicator of it.

The popular poop article (and its awesome Chris Ware illustration that ties in with this blog post title!) is just one piece in a banner month of interesting reading material. It's important to access and read the rest of the issue, cover to cover. I'm confident that these always-veterinarian-proofed stories will help you care for the specific needs of at least one horse in your barn (if not four), and information you’ll learn will benefit how you care for additional horses down the road. Topics in the March issue include heel pain, managing water drainage on horse properties, and fescue toxicosis, among others, and we also offer a breakdown of state-of-the-art information on equine infectious diseases presented by the world’s experts.

Photo: Amy K. Dragoo

(By the way, please let us know when you find certain articles help you with a particular horse in your barn! You can comment below or email us at editorial@TheHorse.com. We love hearing from you.)

Here’s what I really want to highlight, though: There’s a bonus 52-page Wrap-Up of the 2012 American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention that you can get your hands on before the rest of the world. We began planning this issue back in the summer, and it’s the culmination of many, many hours of taking very scientific presentations from the world’s largest equine veterinary meeting (which your veterinarian might have attended … did he or she disappear for a week in December?) and translating them into information you can use in caring for your horses. And our team unpacks the take-homes from this convention unlike any other resource.

Cover Photo: Dusty Perin

I’m very proud of the writers and editors of these stories because taking copious notes, writing, editing, and vetting 100+ of these summaries is time-consuming, thought-intensive work. We love providing you with the details that will end up helping you care for your horses better. When we send this issue off to press it’s always with a sense of accomplishment … and a sense that our brains are full of more material than we thought they could ever manage! This year’s wrap-up is a little different than past years' editions—we gave it a new look, and incorporated some new features. Here were some of my favorite parts of this year's AAEP convention coverage and Wrap-Up (this began back in late November, with Dr. Christy Corp-Minamiji's blog online!):

  • A breakdown of the most up-to-date information on exertional rhabdomyolysis (tying-up) and revelations about seasonal pasture myopathy and its cause.
  • Dynamic photos and compelling material, and especially the editorial layout of the latest lameness studies. 
  • Horse owner-targeted video conversations with veterinarians about table topics, which are moderated sessions where veterinarians chat about hot topics important to horse health.
  • Insightful (and often entertaining) tweets from veterinarians attending the convention, giving a feel for important issues and what the “mood” was about particular topics.
  • Conversations with our sources; specifically, getting a first-hand personal breakdown of the importance of the medicine studies that Dr. Steve Reed (Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital) presented during the Kester News Hour.
  • Christy's blog, in which she broke down important material each day and gave us "in a nutshell" summaries.
  • Our team's incorporation of multimedia offerings into the print edition in an attractive way.

Readers had told us that this annual AAEP Wrap-Up is a resource they hang on to so they can access certain stories again later. We tried to keep that in mind as we built it, and we hope that you enjoy the new look and approach.

You can buy the March issue (which includes the Wrap-Up) or join our horse-loving, care-focused, also-detail-obsessed family as a print or digital edition subscriber.