Jamie Enright, of New Lenox, says when she, her boyfriend and his two children first saw the Staffordshire bull terrier mix at the shelter, they were hooked. They named him "Ollie."
"We were in love in the first minute, we were absolutely in love," said Enright.
She noticed the dog had a limp and was told to have it checked out by the Tender Loving Care shelters' manager in Homer Glen.
A week later, the dog's limp became pronounced, and when she took it to the vet Enright was told it would cost $2,000 to fix a broken leg. Enright returned to the shelter and asked for help with the costs.
"They said they would take it to their vet because they get a discount on surgies and that they would even absorb some of the cost of the surgery," Enright said.
When Enright's boyfriend went to the shelter for the dog they told him they had euthanized it and offered to return $150. But they wanted Ollie back.
"We were devastated. I could not believe they had done that without our consent," said Enright.
Dennis Carter of Tender Loving Care shelter says he has been in the business of saving dogs' lives for over 36 years, and after he took Ollie to the vet and was told it would cost close to $4,000 to repair a growth plate, he says he did what was best for the dog.
"They couldn't afford to do the surgery, that's what they told us...we would take the dog and what we would find out would determine what we do," said Carter. "There was a mixup with the veterinarian's recommendation."
The shelter offered the family another dog. They refused.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture says it has received a complaint about the dog's death and is investigating. Among the issues the state is looking at is the health of the dog when it was adopted.