ASHEVILLE, BUNCOMBE COUNTY -

A gray wolf that made its home at the WNC Nature Center for more than six years has been euthanized following a brief illness.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reports Cody lived at the Nature Center with a female wolf. Center director Chris Gentile said it was about a month and a half ago that a veterinarian discovered a mass during Cody's annual examination.

The veterinarian discovered the mass was taking up most of the animal's spleen. Gentile said that after removing the spleen, cancer was found in Cody's blood.

Gentile said the center was giving the wolf medicine to slow the progress of the cancer, but he said the gray wolf started to decline. The wolf was euthanized on Saturday.

The Nature Center is working to bring in new wolves.