Siх Shаdes Of Greу….Kittеns; Your Nеxt “Cаn’t Put Dоwn” Obsеssion

We are all aware of the bestselling trilogy that references “shades of grey”. And while this refers to the myriad of complex emotions, there’s a new shade in town that stirs up quite a few emotions.

Actually, it’s a whole rainbow of shades of grey that are sure to cause an entire range of colorful emotions!

They just happen to be in a fluffy, newborn kitten shapes! This family of six grey kittens is currently winning the hearts of their foster mom and all who lay eyes upon them. Resting at the home of @WeAreKittenSmitten in Chicago, Illinois, their young lives almost never made it out of the shadows.

It was October 4th when the 6 newborn babes were brought to the CACC (Chicago Animal Care & Control). There was no mama in sight. Had they not been found, their light would have been extinguished. Sadly, with bottle babies that need to be fed every 3 hours, it’s not often shelter workers can do this. So they received a deadline…which would be literal…if they weren’t pulled from the location.



Male & Female / newborn

Intake date: 10/4 – These tinies need a miracle!

Please help them!

But there is a special place tucked within the city, that was happy to take on the responsibility of the newborns; The Catcade.

The Catcade‘s mission is to rescue cats from life-threatening situations such as high-kill shelters and find friendly, quality homes for them.

The young siblings were welcomed into their foster home only to be met with a new challenge. How do you name six kittens that are basically just slightly different shades of grey?! Many pet/animals are given cute names to match their fur color or physical attributes. But for the first few weeks of their lives, it’s VERY difficult to determine the sex of kittens. Luckily their foster mom has a hilarious acceptance of reality.

Who was it who said all cats look gray in the dark? Was it Benjamin Franklin? I’m too tired to Google it myself. Anyway, just LOOK at this pile of dusky gray babyness! (Wait…is babyness even a word? I’m too tired to Google it myself.) There are SIX of ‘em squirming around in that pile, each one cuter than the next.

Two are a solid silvery gray, three have tabby markings on their faces and legs, and one is a dark brown tabby. They are maaaaaaybe a day or two old, so not exactly sushi fresh, but fresh enough by most standards. Each weighs between 95 and 110 grams, and they are all latching well on the syringe.

From the looks of it, it’s possible all six are boys, but please don’t quote me on that just yet because I’ve seen grains of rice more impressive than their junk.

Luckily the artists of the world, and their dedication to offering too many color choices, had a solution. Or six of them.

And with that, the new kittens were all blessed with adorable names in the most popular shades of grey.

Because year after year, kitten season hits and homeless animals are saved daily. So there’s bound to be a time when you are simply “tapped out” of name ideas.

Every foster I know has their own way of handling kitten names. Some like to spend a few days or even weeks getting to know their personalities better. Others let their young kids name them and end up with Fluffy or Kitty or Oreo. I just like to name my foster babies as quickly as possible, because when they’re this tiny and fragile, you never know how much time you’re going to have with them. I feel strongly they deserve a name to document they were here and they mattered.


After a recent remodel of her daughters room this year, it was a given that the kittens be dubbed the Benjamin Moore Graybies!

We have Pinstripe, Sterling, Wickham, Delray, Seal, and Shale. I can barely tell them apart as it is, so it’s entirely possible they’ll swap names over the next couple of weeks. I’m confident it will all eventually work itself out.

A few weeks later and it was blatantly obvious they were NOT little grey girls.

These kittens are 1000% boy – they never stop moving, and they’re drawn to each other like little magnets. If they could talk, I’m pretty sure they would be screaming “MOM HE’S TOUCHING MEEEEEE!” My basement smells like a petting zoo, and I’m constantly breaking up fights, wiping dirty faces and butts, or opening a window because someone farted. I feel like the attendant in a men’s locker room.

Everyone is potty trained, and now that I’ve shaved their butts and made them look like baby baboons, I am no longer harvesting daily dingleberries.


But as they grew into their furry bodies, their cute personalities began to shine through their shades of grey.

Telling them apart however, was not something that came easy in their young ages. Fun game though! 

From left to right: Seal, Sterling, Wickham, Delray, Shale, Pinstripe.

At least I think.

(If it makes you feel any better, I get Delray and Sterling confused at least 80% of the time.)


I have a confession to make. I can’t really tell Wickham, Pinstripe, Sterling, and Delray apart. There are some differences, of course, but they’re very subtle and almost impossible to spot when you’re photographing them from across the room.



But wouldn’t you know it?! They are the most patient, snuggly and fluffy little bunch of grey goodness there every was. So polite too!!!

Regardless of the shades of grey zooming through the house unidentified, they are certain to bring light and joy to their eventual forever homes.

And hopefully some of the boys will be adopted together so more of these moments can be shared with the world. Until then, we’ll be following them on social media to get our fill of our new favorite colors of the day!

It’s odd to find Seal napping with a brother — he generally prefers to stretch out on his own. By the disgruntled look on his face, I’m guessing he had the swing chair first and then Sterling pushed his way in.

Please be sure to follow The Catcade on social media as well. While they may be closed right now to the public due to the pandemic, it’s more than just a unique way to bring attention to homeless animals. However, they do seem to let any rif-raf in! (Wink wink).


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