Location- Stage Coach
Elevation- 2,700 ft
Distance Traveled Today- zero miles
Distance Traveled Total- 77.3 miles
Weather/Temp- clear 70-80
Pain level- zero
Days without shower- 0
Trail angel Christina gave Katana and I a ride up to the animal hospital in Julian this morning. The doctor inspected her paw and diagnosed her with having part of a cactus spur stuck inside of it. After attempting to remove it with a pair of small forceps, he was unsuccessful.
He informed me that he would have to sedate her to remove it, and that I could pick her up later in the afternoon.
To be honest, I’m relieved that the problem was something as simple and trivial as a sharp object embedded in her foot. If it was something like a blister, or a crack, or some other terrain/heat related injury, I would have been a lot more worried about her future on the trail. In my mind, a cactus spur can be attributed to bad luck, rather than ineptitude.
I spent the rest of the morning back at stagecoach, lounging, waiting for early afternoon to roll around. At 2pm, Christina drove me back up there. She was a life saver today.
The doctor and the assistant marveled at how well behaved Katana had been as they confirmed that it was indeed a cactus spur that was lodged in her pad. One bottle of antibiotics, one vial of painkillers, and $207 later, a groggy little CatFox was back in my arms.
I set her on the ground, and she walked around perfectly normal. With the pressure of the spur being out of her paw, she was already walking perfectly. The doc said to simply watch her, and that if she looked like she was OK, then let her do her normal activities.
My plan is to carry her all of tomorrow, to allow any soreness and tenderness to go away, then see how she does walking the day after that. It’s a long shot, but I’m going to order her some hiking booties. I can’t even imagine her taking one step in them, but in order to avoid a repeat of this situation, I have to at least try. Tomorrow is going to be a brutal day for me, no matter how you look at it. As usual, the greater the struggle, the sweeter the victory. Canada is looking better and better every day…
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