THE face of a dog discovered in a tomb in Orkney has been revealed for the first time in more than 4000 years.

Forensic artist Amy Thornton used a 3D print from a CT scan of the creature’s skull to create a model of its head, building up muscle, skin and hair.

Radiocarbon dating of the dog bones unearthed at Cuween suggested that they were ritually buried.

Steve Farrar, interpretation manager at Historic Environment Scotland, said: “Just as they’re treasured pets today, dogs clearly had an important place in Neolithic Orkney, as they were kept and trained as pets and guards and perhaps used by farmers to help tend sheep.

The National:

“But the remains discovered at Cuween Hill suggest that dogs had a particularly special significance for the farmers who lived around and used the tomb about 4500 years ago.

“Maybe dogs were their symbol or totem, perhaps they thought of themselves as the ‘dog people’.

“While reconstructions have previously been made of people from the Neolithic era, we do not know of any previous attempt to forensically reconstruct an animal from this time.

“Looking at this dog helps us better relate to the people who cared for and venerated these animals, people whose ingenuity

and sophistication made Orkney such an important place in the Neolithic era and who have left us with such a rich legacy of monuments today.”

The Cuween Dog was about the size of a large collie and had features similar to those of a European grey wolf.