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20 Examples Of Animals that Smile (A to Z List with Pictures)

Animals that Smile

Animals that smile include Axolotls, Beluga Whales, Chimpanzees, and Dogs.

We all know that animals smile, but did you know that they can smile in different ways?

Dogs may be known as man’s best friend, but they’re not the only animals that smile. From chimpanzees to sloths, a wide variety of creatures exhibit behaviors that resemble human laughter and happiness.

In this blog post, we’ll explore the different ways animals smile and why they do it. We’ll also look at some famous examples of animals who are known for their happy smiles.

Examples of Animals that Smile

1. Axolotls

Scientific NameAmbystoma mexicanum
Type of AnimalFish
RangeMexico
DietCarnivore

The Mexican Walking Fish

Axolotls are native to Mexico, specifically the lake system of Xochimilco. They have a peculiar look about them, with gills and fins that resemble limbs rather than flippers or other types of appendages. Axolotls walk on land using their four legs while still retaining the ability to breathe underwater.

Axolotls are also notable for their permanently “smiling” mouths, which is a result of the upturned corners of their lips. This gives them a rather comical appearance and has earned them the nickname “Mexican Walking Fish”.

2. Beluga Whales

Beluga Whales
Scientific NameDelphinapterus leucas
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeArctic Ocean
DietCarnivore

Beluga whales are one of the more social species of whale, frequently gathering in pods numbering in the dozens. They’re also known for their wide range of vocalizations, which can include clicks, whistles, and even human-like laughter.

Belugas are easily identifiable by their characteristic “smiling” faces, which is created by the protrusion of their upper lips. This gives them a goofy and endearing appearance, which is likely one of the reasons they’re such popular animals.

3. Bottlenose Dolphin

Bottlenose Dolphin
Scientific NameTursiops
Type of AnimalMammal
Rangenorthern Japan to Australia and from Southern California to Chile
DietCarnivore

Bottlenose dolphins are one of the most widely recognized marine mammals. They’re known for their long snouts and playful nature, as well as their signature smile. Dolphins use facial expressions to communicate with each other, and scientists have observed that they often “smile” when they play or interact with humans.

In fact, studies suggest that dolphins may even be able to understand human emotions.

4. Buffalo

Water Buffalo
Scientific NameBubalus bubalis
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeSouth Asia (water buffalo) and Africa (Cape buffalo)
DietHerbivore

The American buffalo is a large bovine mammal that once roamed the Great Plains of North America in huge herds. Today, there are only about 500,000 buffalo remaining in the wild, most of which are located in Yellowstone National Park.

Buffalo are usually shy creatures, but when they do feel comfortable around people they often display what appears to be a smile. The corners of their mouths are upturned when they’re happy, and this gives them the appearance of smiling all the time.

Related Article: What Eats Buffalo?

5. Camels

Camels
Scientific NameCamelus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeNorth Africa and the Middle East
DietHerbivore

Camels are well-known for their ability to travel long distances through the desert without water. They’re also famous for their “smiling” lips, which are actually more prone to stretching into a wide grin than most other animals.

This is because camels have two rows of long, thick eyelashes that protect their eyes from the harsh glare of sandstorms and other elements. The camel’s smile is often used as an expression of happiness or contentment, especially when they’re feeding on their favorite food: cacti.

Related Article: Are Camels Warm-Blooded?

6. Chimpanzees

Chimpanzees
Scientific NamePan troglodytes
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeUganda and western Tanzania
DietOmnivore

Chimpanzees are some of the most widely studied animals in the world and are considered to be our closest living relatives. They live in a variety of habitats across Africa, from rain forests to dry savannas.

One of the most distinctive features of chimpanzees is their facial expressions. Chimps often smile when they’re happy or excited, and they have a wide range of other facial expressions as well.

Chimpanzees also laugh when tickled or during play fighting with their peers. Their laughter sounds similar to human laughter and may even be contagious among groups of chimps.

Read Also: Can Chimpanzees be Cruel?

7. Cockatoos

Cockatoos
Scientific NameCacatuidae
Type of AnimalBird
RangeAustralia as well as in New Guinea
DietOmnivore

Cockatoos are a type of parrot that is found in Australia, Indonesia, and New Guinea. They are known for their striking crest of feathers on the top of their head as well as their playful nature. Cockatoos are also one of the few species of parrots that can learn to speak human words.

One characteristic that sets cockatoos apart from other parrots is their propensity to smile. This can be seen in both wild and captive birds, and is often accompanied by a soft “coo” sound.

Read Also: Do Parrot Eat Pineapples?

8. Dogs

Dogs
Scientific NameCanis lupus familiaris
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietOmnivore

Dogs are the most common domesticated animals and can be found in a variety of different breeds. They have long been considered to be man’s best friends due to their loyal nature, playful disposition, and ability to show affection through tail wagging or licking one another on the face (licking is also indicative of submission).

Dogs smile when they are happy, and this behavior is often accompanied by a wagging tail.

9. Geckos

Geckos
Scientific NameGekkonidae
Type of AnimalReptile
RangeWorldwide
DietCarnivore

Geckos are small lizards that live in warm climates all over the world. They have a wide variety of colors and patterns, from black to browns, greens, or yellows. Geckos are notable for their ability to climb on surfaces using adhesive feet pads which can stick onto most materials with ease.

These little creatures also have a habit of “smiling” with their mouth wide open, revealing their teeth.

Related Article: Do Geckos Eat Ants?

10. Goats

Anglo-Nubian Goat
Scientific NameCapra aegagrus hircus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietHerbivore

Goats are known for their rambunctious behavior and tendency to jump on things. They will often be seen “high-fiving” each other or butting heads in a playful manner that resembles laughter between humans.

Goats have also been observed making noises such as bleating, grunting, and snorting when they’re happy, which can sound remarkably like human laughter.

11. Hippopotamus

Hippo
Scientific NameHippopotamus amphibius
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAfrica
DietOmnivore

The hippopotamus is a large, herbivorous mammal that inhabits the rivers and lakes of Africa. They are well-known for their huge size – an adult male can weigh up to two tons – as well as their protruding incisors and “smiling” mouths.

Despite their fearsome appearance, hippos are actually quite docile and peaceful creatures that spend most of their time grazing. They are only dangerous when provoked or threatened, at which point they will attack anything in sight – including humans.

Read Also: Are Hippopotamus Without Fur?

12. Horses

Curly Horse
Scientific NameEquus caballus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietHerbivore

Horses are perhaps best known for their expressive eyes and facial features. It’s not uncommon to see a horse that looks sad or scared, for example. However, horses also sometimes smile, usually as a result of being happy or content.

You’re most likely to see this behavior in foals (baby horses), who will often nuzzle against their mothers when they’re feeling comfortable and safe.

13. Humans

Humans
Scientific NameHomo sapiens
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietOmnivore

Humans are the only species of animal that can truly smile, but not all humans can do so. People with certain congenital disorders such as Down syndrome or cerebral palsy may have trouble smiling due to muscle weakness in their face and mouth area. Some individuals also lack teeth altogether which makes it harder for them to show their emotions through facial expressions.

Humans have a variety of ways to show their happiness; smiling is just one option that many people choose when they want others around them to know how they feel inside.

The human brain has an area dedicated specifically for processing facial expressions called the fusiform gyrus, which allows us not only to identify other people’s emotions but also to express our own feelings using different facial movements.

14. Kittens

Kittens
Scientific NameFelis catus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietCarnivore

Kittens are some of the cutest creatures on earth, and they often exhibit behaviors that make them appear to be smiling. When a kitten is happy or content, it will usually close its eyes and lift its chin up in the air while curling its mouth into a smile. This behavior is known as “sneezing”.

15. Monkeys

Vervet Monkey
Scientific NameCercopithecidae
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide
DietOmnivore

Monkeys are perhaps the most commonly known “smiling” animals. Many species of monkeys have a characteristic grin that is often mistaken for a human smile. This may be due to the fact that monkeys exhibit many behaviors that are similar to humans, including laughing, playing, and grooming each other.

One of the most famous examples of a monkey’s smile is the “grinning face” of a Japanese macaque, also known as a snow monkey. This iconic pose was first seen in Japan and then spread around the world via social media sites like Facebook and Instagram.

16. Quokka

Quokka
Scientific NameSetonix brachyurus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAustralia
DietHerbivore

The quokka is a small marsupial found in Western Australia. It is known for its distinctively large head and ears, as well as its tail which has black fur at the tip. The quokka’s smile appears to be permanent due to the upturned corners of their mouth; however, this does not mean that they are always happy!

Quokkas are herbivores and live in social groups of up to 15 individuals. They are considered to be the happiest animals in the world, and it’s easy to see why – just look at that smile.

17. Sloths

Sloth
Scientific NameFolivora
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeSouth America
DietOmnivore

Sloths are perhaps best known for their lazy demeanor and slow-moving lifestyle. What most people don’t know, however, is that sloths actually move quite quickly when they want to. They’re also quite intelligent creatures that can make sophisticated tools out of the leaves on their backsides.

Sloths are easily recognizable by their wide, open mouths and large eyes. This is what gives them such an adorable appearance and has made them popular as pets in some parts of South America where they live naturally.

18. Squirrel

Eastern Gray Squirrel
Scientific NameSciuridae
Type of AnimalMammal
Rangethe Americas, Eurasia, and Africa
DietOmnivore

Squirrels are small rodents that can be found in most parts of the world. They are well known for their long bushy tails, which they use to balance while running up trees or jumping across branches at high speeds.

Squirrels also have a habit of storing nuts and seeds inside tree cavities during times when food is scarce so that they can eat them later.

Squirrels are commonly associated with happiness and playfulness, which is likely why so many people refer to them as “happy little rodents”. Their upturned mouths definitely contribute to this image.

19. Wild Boars

Wild Boars
Scientific NameSus scrofa
Type of AnimalMammal
Rangewestern and northern Europe and North Africa to India, the Andaman Islands, and China
DietOmnivore

Wild boars are a type of pig that is native to Europe, Asia, and Africa. They have short tusks protruding from their faces which they use for digging up roots or defending themselves against predators.

The wild boar is a muscular, strong, and powerful animal that can be dangerous if provoked. Their skin is covered in coarse hair ranging from dark brownish black to red-brown; their snouts are tipped white or grayish-yellow.

20. Zebra

Zebra
Scientific NameEquus quagga
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAfrica
DietHerbivore

Zebras are one of the most well-known examples of animals that smile. These hardy creatures have a habit of bowing their heads to show submission and happiness, which makes them appear as though they’re smiling at all times.

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