Curly, age 15, was left at a shelter by owners who said that he was compulsively licking walls and linoleum to the point of breaking off pieces. A shih tzu-bichon mix, that face was just too much for us to ignore and he moved into an ODH home. He was cheery and lively the first week, no doubt so happy to be back in a home and wanted, but the vet quickly found an extremely serious illness brewing. Perhaps it (pain) was the cause of the licking, perhaps toxins in the walls or linoleum were the cause, but in any case he would need intensive care and transfusions with no guarantee of survival.
This little guy was charming to his ODH parents and absolutely impossible for the vets to handle or treat; sending him to a hospital for extensive treatment seemed so unfair for a dog of his age with only a small chance of survival. Letting him go was an emotional wrench for his ODH parents who had of course come to love him already – but they are comforted that he was with people who cared about him and tried to help him. They will grieve for him and sometimes that is all we can do.