Wow Rod! What a story! What determination! I for sure hope the rest of the trip went so much betta for U.
I know your feeling for the dog. We had to put one down a few years back that had been with us for 12 years. Very sad day.
An '00 KLR 650, An '07 1250S, An '03 5.3L Chevy Truck + '43 style dude , Simper Fi ;-)