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On yesterday's walk, Max went from happily trotting along to limping heavily in one step. I couldn't see anything in his foot pad except a small spot of tar he'd picked up, but I decided on taking him to the vet to be on the safe side. The vet examined Max and shaved the tar off to have a look (lots of fun for me, getting to be the one restraining my 75lb chicken lol), found nothing in th foot pad. Palpation of the limb revealed sensitivity over the metacarpals. The vet says he's likely strained those muscles (I assume he's referring to the interossei based on the area he showed me, but I don't know canine anatomy, so that's sort of a guess). Max is to be strictly rested for the next few days, no running, no long walks, just out to do business and then back in. He offered pain medication, but since Max is still walking on it (which he shouldn't be except when absolutely necessary) I declined......he's already not interested in resting and I'm afraid if it doesn't hurt him he'll overuse it and stress it further. Plus, he's not withdrawn or exhibiting any of the signs I associate with severe pain.

Anyway, he's my dilema......he knows that there are kittens living in the bedroom at the end of the hall, so he's always heading down there when he hears them make noise, often at a run. He's super nosy when people come over, how can I keep him off it? He has a crate that he sleeps in anyway (it's his hangout in the living room, w/ a bed inside and a thick blanket over it so it's like a den), so I can crate him, but he's accustomed to having the door open all the time and coming and going as he pleases. He's good about me closing him in when I have to, but I don't want to put him off or make him feel bad by forcing him to stay in too long. So, how long is too long in the crate for him?