I am an animal lover....I had a cat/s from as long ago as I can remember. We continued to have cats also until about 4 years ago when I was happy to have cleaned out my last litter box, etc.
One thing we didn't count on was that our cats kept all the little critters away. We never had mice when we had a cat.... and cats are pretty self-sufficient. We can leave food out for a cat and go away for the weekend and the cat is fine. Every now and then Mr. Kay will mention getting a cat, or I will think about a cat, but up until now we were able to resist.
The deciding factor is all the chipmunks and rabbits that have taken up residence around our gardens! Almost every zinnia I planted has had the bottom leaves chewed off. I've had enough!!!! I got a kitten last week. Had it for less than 5 minutes and it jumped out of the box it was in and it ran away as fast as its little legs would carry it. The kitten was gone!!! We looked for it, but with no luck. This morning I got a message and a picture of my kitten! The kitten had been found, but was with another family.... Lucky for me they were willing to give it back to me and now "Fluffy, her Majesty" is home where she will earn her happy home by keeping the critters away! Well, that's the plan.