Setting aside for a moment the obvious "cuteness" and "awww - inspiring" of the subject, I think this photo is perfectly balanced, and the choice of black and white is an intelligent one. The way the light plays with the fur and the whiskers of the critter, creating a beautiful rim that enhances the puffiness and softness of the pure white, is just perfect. Maybe deciding to avoid color you lost the pink of the nose and probably the reddish tint of the eyes, but at the end the look of "cotton" is extraordinary. I usually don't go all "awww" on "cute" photos, but this one is really one big step ahead of them: the quality is very high and the impact is maxed. Wonderful work.