Devon

Dentist extracts teeth from Paignton Zoo's Asiatic lion

Indu during the operation
Image caption It is thought Indu chipped her teeth while biting on something hard, a zoo spokesman said
Indu during the operation
Image caption An adult Asiatic lion has about 30 teeth and weighs about 20 stone (130 kg)
One of Indu's teeth
Image caption Indu had a canine and pre-molar extracted during the operation

An Asiatic lion at a Devon zoo has had two teeth removed by a dentist who normally treats humans.

Indu had a canine and pre-molar extracted by Dr Peter Kertesz at Paignton Zoo.

The dentist, who has a surgery in London, has worked with pandas, whales and gorillas.

A zoo spokesman said it was believed the female lion had chipped her teeth while biting on something hard and that she was recovering well.

'Serious business'

An adult Asiatic lion weighs about 20 stone (130 kg) and has up to 30 teeth, including canines that can be many inches in length, a zoo spokesman added.

Dr Kertesz said: "Animals or people, it's all the same - they need treatment, they get treatment. The scale and the location is what varies.

"People ask if this is just a bit of fun, but it is a very serious business. The health and sometimes the life of a rare creature is in your hands."

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