Thursday morning Dash was still in hiding. I topped off the food and water and cleaned out the litter box before heading off for work.
When I got home Thursday night the food dish was untouched. This concerned me. I knew he would be under the couch, so I tipped it up to roust him out. No squeaker.
So I got down on the floor and lifted up the foot rest. Squeaker is tucked way in the back behind a metal bar. I think maybe he's stuck back there and can't get out. Maybe that's why he hasn't eaten anything all day.
NOTE: Cats never get stuck anywhere. Anyplace a cat can get to a cat can get out of.
So I set about the task of extracting the cat. I'm laying on my left side trying to reach all the way into the back of the couch. I really need both hands, but I can only get my left hand back there. I try to get my right hand back there too, but only manage to bloody-up my right forearm on the hardware at the bottom of the footrest.
I finally manage to get Dash by the scruff of his neck and pull him out.
I pet him and cuddle him until I get him purring. I take him over and show him his food again. He's not interested. He wants down so I let him go.
Later that evening I'm sitting on the couch and something spooks him. He shoots out from under the couch and heads up stairs. But this time, both bedroom doors are closed. There's nowhere for him to hide. As I go up stairs to get him I can hear him butting against my bedroom door. When I get to the landing he panics and dashes past me hissing, hurling himself downstairs.
I go back downstairs and check under the couch. No squeaker. I check the bathroom and see the most heartbreaking sight. Squeaker is up on the bathroom counter, in the corner, up on his hind legs, pressed as close to the wall as he can get, making that squeaking sound. He doesn't make any effort to resist or try to get away as I pick him up and calm him down.
Around 11 I get ready for bed. No need to top off the food dish because he still hasn't eaten anything. I look for him and find him cowering behind the downstairs toilet.
It occurs to me that he seems to be most comfortable in small dark places right now. His litter box was already in the bathroom, so I moved his food and water in the bathroom with him, turned off the light and closed the door. My hope was that he would feel safe and secure enough to eat something.
That was Day 2.