replying to Happy Puppy:
I'm not much of a cat person, but had the experience of being chosen by a kitten in search of a steady food supply.
Very intelligent and social animal, talked a lot... Did silly things like playing fetch, growling when hearing a strange noise. Jumping into the shower ahead of me in getting ready for work in the mornings.
Around seven years of age, I got the feeling something was missing in that cat's well-being. He'd get restless and go through spontaneous mewing fits.
Later that year I'd moved into a townhome, and started letting him out onto the fenced in patio. Cat loved it, in that he'd sharpen his talons on a tree. Stretch out in the sun, and catch whatever critters decided to wander through.
Six months later he was killed by a fox, and like you I felt bad about the experience... Until I realized at eight years, he'd had a very long life vs.
the average cat.
Seeing a cat out in nature doing what cats are designed to do...is an amazing site. I decided I'd much prefer remembering the six months of his being outdoors vs. three or six more indoors and feeling he's not satisfied.
Although I enjoyed the experience, decided not to have a cat as a pet again. In the city it just isn't practicle, to let them roam outdoors. I tend to now feel that it's almost cruel to keep them in.