My folks adopted Sassy as a companion for Dylan; I adopted Pearl as a companion for Clyde. Then it became clear that Clyde's mom, Abby, was too fearful to be adoptable, so my Mom took her in as a foster, to work with her. Although Abby has improved drastically, she's still not considered adoptable, and we couldn't bear to see her go back into a cage, so my folks kept her, and she was my father's roommate and "girlfriend," as he called her, for years.
Then I moved in with my folks, and suddenly instead of one two-cat household and one three-cat household, we had a single FIVE-cat household. No mas,
we said (in the immortal words of Roberto Duran).
Then somebody threw a six-week-old orange tabby out of a car
and Mom and I were at the shelter when he needed a foster, so he came home with us. But he turned out to be the most beautiful, gentle, intelligent, and loving little guy in the world, and there was no way to give that little sweetheart back.
So now with St. John, we're a SIX
Do we regret it? Not in the sense that we would ever think of undoing it, no! Each and every cat is a special treasure in his or her own way, and our lives would not be complete without all
But having six cats is a huge logistical problem (in addition to involving a lot of work and a lot of expense). It forces us to stay in this house, even though we might be better off selling it and moving into an apartment. If that becomes financially necessary, which it easily could, then I guess all we can do is lie lie lie and hope they just don't notice that we have three times
the upper limit on cats.
We never imagined that our households would join up permanently. If we had, we'd have at least kept it down to two cats each, for a total of four. But then we wouldn't have Abby or St. John, and what would we do without them?
Unless you're sure you'll always be able to afford a house of your own, you probably ought to stick with two cats... or maaaaaybe three, if you think you can negotiate landlords up to that.