For the 15th year, we are promoting National Farriers Week. This year, the week falls July 7 to 13. From now until July 1, we encourage horse owners, trainers, riders, grooms, veterinarians and others in the equine community to submit pictures and videos of their farriers at work with horses and to share their appreciation for those efforts. We will publish these on our website.

But appreciation shouldn't stop with the general equine community. We are increasing the call this year for farriers to join the celebration by recognizing their footcare mentors. Just as above, we encourage you to submit stories, photos or videos as tributes to the mentors from your life. This does not have to be complicated — simply let us know who they are and why the mentors were instrumental to your development as a farrier.

This honoring holds special significance because who better understands the contributions to footcare more than another practitioner? Mentors help accelerate your understanding of the science and mechanics of farriery. They give keen insight to running a business rather than only running a practice. They can be a positive force when you are struggling. As Collinsville, Texas, farrier Doyle Blagg stated in the second edition of "Getting Started in Hoof Care, mentors have "energy and drive that will rub off on you and bring you up when you fall flat."

You can submit your photos, videos and stories to Michelle Drewek at Be sure to include your full name and location with your submission.