Just back from the vet's. Jasper was a star, he even let Auntie Kate examine his paw and his joints... Until she stretched out his elbow, when either she'd found the source of the pain or he'd just plain had enough. Maybe having Mr N there helped keep him calmer. She doesn't think there's any infection in the pad and that if it is the source of pain, it could be a corn/thickening under the surface. But as he also had a reaction when Mr N felt his elbow a few days ago, that could well be the source of the pain. She agreed that we should simply let J do what he wants to do rather than restrict his walks, though suggested keeping him on lead. The last two times he's had a limp come on suddenly were after spotting a friend in the park and running over to them, so I'll probably keep him on lead in places this might happen but let him off if we go exploring off piste. As far as his dementia is concerned, we're going to try giving gabapentin in the evenings as it has a relaxing, but not sedating, effect. She thinks sedatives would have unwanted side effects - though I'm fine to try 'natural' calmers like YuCalm. So I'm happy - we know he's not going to be with us for ever, but can just get on with letting him enjoy his life as much as possible. And for the time being at least, I'm coping with the nights. When he goes, I want to be able to say, 'But at least we had a great walk together yesterday' rather than 'That past week of enforced rest, which made him miserable, was a waste of valuable time.'