As the huge animal-lover that I am, I could not be without a pet. The picture here is of my cat Tiggy (an 8-year-old tabby female), veryphotogenic, I am sure you will agree! However I know that some vegans believethat we should not keep animals as pets as it restricts their freedom. I can't see any problem with it, as long as they are in a good home (after all, I presume the main precept of veganism is to prevent animal exploitation and suffering, as much as possible. A pet in a good home has a much better life than an animal in the wild!)
My main concern with keeping a cat is that since she is a naturally a carnivorous animal, I have to feed her meat. I feed her ordinary, non-vegan cat food, which is the only meat or animal product which I am still buying. This still gives me a bad conscience sometimes, as by buying this, even though it is not for myself, I am still supporting the meat industry, which naturally I find abhorrent! Ideally I would like to feed my cat on vegan cat food (I gather that there are some good brands available these days) but that poses certain problems. Firstly, I am on a tight budget and the vegan cat food is more expensive and I would have to order it specially online. There is also no guarantee that my cat would eat it anyway, as she is very fussy (like so many cats!) So I could end up wasting my already limited money.
The other main problem is that I don't know if cats can live healthily on a vegan diet. I have heard mixed reports about this. Cats apparently need an amino acid called taurine in their diet, which they get from normal catfood. I believe that the vegan catfood is supplemented with taurine though, but I don't know the long-term effects on cats of a vegan diet. It may be quite a big risk for me to take at present, since if she started getting ill I could not afford a lot of vet's bills. She does actually have a partly vegan diet: she has AmiPet plant-based cat biscuits, which were kindly given to me by a vegan friend. I know she will not eat purely dry food though. I hope in time to try her on the other vegan "catmeat", when my financial situation improves somewhat! I do find keeping a carnivorous pet like a cat or dog is quite a moral dilemma if you are a vegan.