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5 Things: Why Does Your Dog Yawn So Much?

Tasty news tidbits to fortify your brain.

No wonder we love our dogs. They love us. Credit: Morguefile
No wonder we love our dogs. They love us. Credit: Morguefile
1. Someone Gets Paid to Study This:  In a study published Wednesday in the open access journal PLOS ONE, University of Tokyo researchers say dogs are more responsive to their owners' yawns than to a stranger's yawn -- a sign that dogs are more empathetic than previously understood. In the study, 25 dogs were observed in their owners' homes. Researchers recorded their responses to watching their owners yawn, then watching an unfamiliar researcher yawn. They yawned nearly fives times more often in response to their owners' yawns. Read more here.


2. Christie v. Rubio in a NH Popularity Poll: Politico.com reports that Florida Sen. Marco Rubio lost favor with many New Hampshire voters in recent months while New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie saw a surge in support, according to a poll released Aug. 6. Rubio dropped 9 percentage points since April and fell from first to fifth among likely GOP contenders for the 2016 election, according to a Granite State Poll, sponsored by WMUR-TV, and conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. Rubio was the choice of 12 percent of voters in February and 15 percent in April, but just 6 percent in July.

3. Cocoa Boosts Memory: Drinking two cups of hot chocolate a day may help older people keep their brains sharp and improve their memory, U.S. researchers say. Study author Dr. Farzaneh A. Sorond of Harvard Medical School in Boston said the study involved 60 people with an average age of 73 who did not have dementia. Keeps the blood flowing, it seems. Read more here.

4. George W. Gets Heart Healthier: President George W. Bush was hospitalized Tuesday morning after having a procedure to open a blocked heart artery. The procedure was successful, and according to Bush's office, the 67-year-old former president should be able to "resume his normal schedule on Thursday." Click here to read more, including a statement issued by Bush's office.

5. Old Dogs Can Learn New Tricks: This letter to the Animal Doc Michael Fox in WaPo dispels the long-running adage that you can't teach a dog new tricks. I like it when that happens.


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