The case was the same for my pet parrot, Mittoo. Although, he fed him well, it was missing an important element. My personal touch to it. It too shed its feathers and was looking skinny when I came back. But, the moment I was back, I saw it interacting with enthusiasm and heartiness.
Life and interaction with any living being is a bridge of emotions with two way traffic. What we give to the other being is returned in almost a similar or at times with double intensity.
Watch him, relish fresh fruits as also view the almost died Tulsi plant as well as its status after just a day of watering.
When, some people show affection towards me, and my family at strange and cruel life situations, I feel the magnitude of their action, many fold to what we did towards them. Just an assurance or “will be there” without asking, when you are really in need of it, is a great feeling and confidence booster to look forward to a life ahead.
I realized, there are living beings that are intensely possessive and passionate about the way about I care for them, and they themselves return the same possession and passion with true devotion.
I am sure; this life reality is the same in your case too.