Young boy writes letter of ‘recommendation’ on behalf of foster pup to increase her chance of adoption

This young boy from Louisiana had the most adorable way of letting his foster dog’s future family know how good a girl she is.

Last year, Roman Duncan’s family fostered a dog named Maggie from North Shore Animal League America. The dog was rescued as a pup and was too young to be adopted at the time, so the Duncans took her in.

North Shore Animal League America

Roman and his younger brother, Wyatt, quickly formed a bond with the sweet dog during her formative months. With the help of their parents, they were able to teach Maggie basic obedience skills while helping her feel comfortable in a home environment.

Throughout the entire experience, the boys’ parents made it clear that they were only fostering Maggie and that another family would eventually adopt her when she was old enough.

Still, Roman couldn’t help but feel sad when it came time for Maggie to leave for North Shore Animal League America’s adoption center in Port Washington, New York. So, the boy did one final act of love for the dog.

Roman Duncan and Maggie cuddling on the couch
North Shore Animal League America

Roman wrote letters of recommendation for Maggie’s future family to list down all the reasons she’s “the best dog you could ask for.” Aside from being cute and potty trained, the boy noted that the pup loved fetch, other dogs, kids, and cuddles (adorably spelled as “cutellies”).

“We love Maggie. I hope you do, too,” wrote Roman in one of his notes.

While they were loading Maggie onto the animal transport truck to New York, Roman slipped the letters and a few photos of the dog into her paperwork. The dog then made the journey with 50 other adoptable puppies, kittens, dogs, and cats.

Karla Agostinello, rescue team manager for North Shore Animal League America, was pleasantly surprised to find Roman’s sweet notes and cute drawings when she opened Maggie’s file.

Roman's letter of recommendation for Maggie
North Shore Animal League America

“I was so touched,” she said. “It’s hard (for fosters) to put the animals on the truck. So I do get a lot of letters from adults—but children, not many. So this is why it touched my heart so much.”

The good news is that Maggie has since been adopted by a loving family, and the shelter made sure they got Roman’s letters.

“She’s doing great. Her time with [the Duncan] family was very beneficial to her,” Agostinello said.

She’s currently working on connecting Roman with Maggie’s adopters so he would know what a great job he had done in fostering her.

Now that Roman’s story is attracting attention, North Shore Animal League America hopes it inspires other families to consider fostering pets.

Roman's letter of recommendation for Maggie
North Shore Animal League America

“Foster families are so important because they’re the pet’s first stop—the first family,” Agostinello said. “They’re instilling a foundation of love and care.”

Foster families also help keep stray animals from being euthanized in shelters due to lack of space.

Agostinello also noted that Roman’s parents did the right thing by making it clear that fostering is a temporary arrangement.

“You definitely have to set the expectation before you even bring the animal home: ‘We’re not keeping this animal, but we can do it again and you can love another animal,'” she said. “I always tell foster families, ‘Goodbye is the goal.’ They’re doing so much good.”

Maggie wearing a red hoodie while sleeping on a couch
North Shore Animal League America

As demonstrated by Roman’s heartwarming letters, fostering animals can help kids learn compassion and responsibility. North Shore Animal League America also conducts a “Mutt-i-grees” program in classrooms to help instill caring for pets.

“The impact that animals have on children is honestly incredible,” Agostinello said.

Since 2019, over 700 animals have been fostered and adopted through North Shore Animal League America, which was founded in 1944.

Visit North Shore Animal League America’s website to learn more about pet fostering opportunities.

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