Tangerine is sick. Since Sunday she has gone rapidly downhill, turning from purring, affectionate cat to this miserable lump hiding in the linen closet. Richard called our vet, but as she's a house call-only, she thought this required more tests than she could run with her limited facilities. So she sent him and Tangerine off to another one - someone who comes with belated positive comments from people I spoke with after the fact. I have heard too many bad things about most of the vets in our area, after all.
He took blood and we discussed whether to run x-rays and other tests, but decided, ultimately, to wait, keeping her on bland food to settle her gut and try to minimize the severe diarrhea and vomiting she's been having. And so since then, we are force-feeding her a mixture of baby food turkey and baby rice, which she takes without much struggle. It's a delicate balance between how much she'll let us feed her before she promptly returns it to the floor in a stinky puddle, or whether she'll keep it down.
This evening, I curled up on the floor next to her and petted her. She moved her face closer and so I did the same. When healthy, this normally results in her trying to remove the skin from the tip of my nose with her tongue, so enthusiastic are her licks. This time she only barely touched me, but still, it was there.