A Scottish wildlife centre has said the decision to euthanise four of its wolves after the death of their pack leader had been taken "as a last resort". 

Camperdown Wildlife Centre in Dundee announced they had been forced to put down alpha male wolf Loki yesterday after complications arising from an operation. 

The decision was reached to "save the animal from further pain", a statement by the centre explained on Monday.

The park closed early on Tuesday, March 21, ahead of the emergency operation on the wolf.

While it was initially considered a "successful" treatment, the alpha sadly developed complications. 

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The centre later revealed the other four wolves exhibited "unusually anxious and abnormal behaviour" following the alpha's medical treatment - prompting further closures.

After the animals continued to exhibit unusual behaviour, a decision was taken to euthanise them as well.

A statement published on their social media read: "Despite an initially successful operation, there have been subsequent complications, and the difficult decision was reached to save the animal from further pain.

"The other four wolves in the pack have been exhibiting unusually anxious and abnormal behaviour since the operation, and it is with great sadness that these wolves have also been euthanised as a result.

"This course of action was a last resort, and our team is absolutely heartbroken. We ask you for your kind consideration at this time."

The wildlife centre faced criticism for its original statement and later emphasised the decision was not reached lightly. 

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It read: "We thank members of the public who have sent messages of support and for their kind consideration during this painful time for our team.

"We can assure everyone that this difficult decision was taken following expert advice and consultation with the relevant professional bodies."

The Herald has approached the wildlife centre for further comment.