Pets & Animals

Open wide! Toothless lion cub shows off her gums

Ashley Vincent / Rex / Today
A lion cub at the Khao Kheow Open Zoo in Chonburi Province, Thailand gives the camera a good view of her gummy mouth.

Between Superstorm Sandy, an intense election season and the impending nor’easter, we needed a smile today as much as you probably do. Fortunately, this photo of a six-day-old lion cub came our way.

The cub looks like she is trying to give an intimidating roar but instead of feeling threatened we had to "awww" in our office at the sight of her cute toothless grin.

According to Solent News, the cub is named Ying Yai (Elder Princess) and her mighty yawn was captured at a zoo in Thailand by British photographer Ashley Vincent.

"At six days old the cubs were teething. Occasionally they would wince and give out a little cry," Vincent told Solent News.

By lying on the ground, the photographer was able to get this amazing shot of the cub extending her jaws and exposing her teeth just as they were beginning to show.

"I called the photo 'Roaring Practice' for the fun of it, knowing that wasn't what she was actually doing," he said.

Ashley Vincent / Rex / Today
Ying Yai and her sister bump heads as they unsteadily move around at 14 days old. "They appeared to still be learning to adjust the focus of their eyes, so it wasn't uncommon to see them bumping into things and each other," photographer Ashley Vincent said.

He photographed Ying Yai and her two sisters from birth until they were five months old, when they started showing signs of their predatory nature.

"I never felt seriously threatened or in any actual danger ... but by five months of age they have some weight and size to reckon with, not to mention their teeth and claws," Vincent said. "They are more than capable of piercing skin and I keep in mind these lovely cubs are still wild at heart."

Ashley Vincent / Rex / Today
Ying Yai and her two sisters, Ying Klang (Middle Princess) and Ying Lek (Little Princess), lounge together at 1 month of age.

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