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Study says people would rather hang out with their dogs than friends

A new study says that most dog owners would rather spend time with their pup than their friends.

Fox News reported that a study of 2,000 dog owners conducted by smart dog collar company Link AKC says more than half prefer their pet over pals. Owners said they sometimes skip out on social events to be with their dog.

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Eighty-one percent of those surveyed said they spoke to their dog like they would a friend. Single dog owners were twice as likely to talk to their pet about relationship problems. Eighty percent of owners said it’s a deal breaker if their partner didn’t like their dog.

The study found that six in 10 pet owners said their dog takes care of them in some way, with many saying their pet helped them get through a breakup or death of a loved one. 

Sixty-two percent of the pet owners surveyed said their dogs helped get them out the house at least twice a day for a walk and more than two-thirds said their dog helps them exercise more regularly.

“The physical benefits of dog ownership are often the first that come to mind, but we’ve found the emotional and mental health benefits of having a furry companion are just as impactful,” Link AKC chief marketing officer Herbie Calves told Fox News. “People consider their dogs members of their family and are looking for ways to connect and interact with them on a deeper level.”

The survey supports Calves’ claim. Fifty-five percent say unconditional love and constant companionship is among the biggest benefit of dog ownership.

“Dog ownership is a great responsibility but also comes with great physical, emotional and mental benefits,” Calves said.

Baby found abandoned on airport bathroom changing table

Authorities are trying to find the person who abandoned a baby in an airport bathroom. 

Police at Tucson International Airport are now combing through surveillance footage, trying to find out who left the a newborn baby boy on a woman’s bathroom changing table Sunday, AZCentral reported.

Not only are they trying to find the mother of the baby to find out what happened, but also to find out if she needs help.

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The newborn was only hours old and was in good health, Tucson Police spokeswoman Jessie Butler told AZCentral.

The baby was clean and swaddled, KMSB reported.

Arizona is a state that offers Safe Haven for babies, meaning they can be dropped off at specific locations like staffed fire stations, hospitals and churches. Parents can be anonymous but they have to answer questions about the baby and its health, KMSB reported. According to the Safe Haven law, babies can be up to three days old.

Since the program started in 2001, 40 babies have been taken in by Safe Haven, KMSB reported.

An airport is not listed among the legal locations, but there was a fire station nearby, AZCentral reported.

If found, the mother could face charges after police investigate why she left the baby.

Doctor arrested for showing up for surgery inebriated, police say

A plastic surgeon showed up for surgery Monday while intoxicated and was arrested, according to police. 

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Dr. Theodore Gerstle was confronted by the chief medical officer at Baptist Health Lexington and then left the hospital on foot, according to WKYT

Police were then called and took Gerstle into custody. Gerstle was charged with public intoxication.

“Patient safety is always our number one concern,” Ruth Ann Childers, hopsital spokeswoman, told WKYT. “This will be thoroughly investigated.”

Grandson surprises grandfather with restored 1957 Chevy

Fred Lamar’s 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air sat in a garage, just as he left it, for 30 years.

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Until about a year ago, when his grandson, Cameron Dedman, started restoring the iconic Motor City machine.

On Saturday, Lamar, 81, nearly passed out when the car was revealed to him.

“I have been doing a full frame off restoration of this car a big surprise for my grandpa,” Dedman wrote in a post with the photos of the restored Bel Air. “He’s my best friend and truly deserves it.”

Lamar has owned the vehicle since the 1950s. The pair plan to take it to car shows this spring and summer, according to WHAS.

Is feeding a cold a real thing? 5 winter health myths debunked

You've probably heard winter health myths for years and you may have even accepted some of them as fact.

From being told to bundle up, so you don't catch a cold to your neighbor swearing he got the flu from his flu shot, these myths make the rounds every winter.

Breathe easy: 5 household plants that improve air quality

We separate fact from fiction with the following five winter health myths:

Cold weather can make you get sick.

Mom always warned you you'd get sick if you didn't bundle up before heading out in cold weather. Her advice wasn't exactly horrible, since you'll certainly be more comfortable and protected from frostbite. But cold by itself doesn't make you more likely to get sick, according to The Weather Channel. Most experts think we're more likely to get sick in colder months, but that's because we're all cooped up together, exchanging germs. Cold weather also dries out your nasal passages, reducing their ability to filter out infections. Despite evidence to the contrary, moms will probably keep warning their kids to bundle up. It's what they do.

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You lose 90 percent of your body heat through your head.

Of all your body parts, your head is more likely to be exposed in cold weather. But that doesn't mean the myth about losing 90 percent of your body heat through your head is true, according to Business Insider. Sure, wearing a hat in cold weather will help you stay warm, but that's just because you're covering an exposed body part, not because there's anything special about your head. You could cover up any other exposed body part and also feel warmer.

You don't need sunscreen in the winter.

If you think you only need sunscreen in hotter weather, you've probably packed your lotion away by the time winter comes around. But even when the weather's overcast in the winter, up to 80 percent of the sun's rays can still penetrate the clouds, according to Reader's digest.

UVA rays are always present - even in winter - and they can damage the deeper layers of your skin, increasing your risk for skin cancer and causing premature aging of your skin. And if you're planning a ski trip, you should be even more careful. UV radiation increases with elevation, and snow reflects and intensifies sunlight. So whatever the season, wearing sunscreen with at least a 30 SPF is the safest way to go.

Feed a cold, starve a fever.

The origin of this myth may be rooted in antiquated beliefs about colds and fevers, according to CNN. It was once believed that your body literally became colder if you had a cold, so it needed to be "warmed up" with food. Fever was thought to need "cooling down" by not eating.

In reality, you need to eat whether you have a cold or a fever. Good, nutritious foods are important, but it's OK if your illness suppresses your appetite a little. Staying hydrated is most important, especially if you have a fever. You may need to replenish electrolytes, so sports drinks can be a good choice. Good ol' chicken soup will keep you hydrated while also helping to clear your nasal passages.

RELATED: Your guide to an (almost) allergy-free home

The flu shot can give you the flu.

This isn't true, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC). Flu shots are made with either an inactive form of the virus or no flu virus at all. Neither type can give you the flu. You may have a sore arm after getting a flu shot and some people report having a low-grade fever and aches for a day or two, but it's not the flu.

On the other hand, you may still get the flu even if you've had a flu shot, but the odds of getting it are much lower and, if you do get the flu, the symptoms will likely be less severe.

Teen accused of killing acquaintance who sold him paprika instead of pot 

A Utah teenager has been charged as an adult in a homicide that police investigators said took place after another teen sold him cooking spices instead of marijuana.

Seth Carreras, 17, of Layton, was moved into the adult population at the Davis County Jail earlier this month, according to The Salt Lake Tribune. He is being held without bail on charges of murder and assault by a prisoner.

Reporters described Carreras as “smirking” during a Jan. 5 court hearing in the death of Hunter Woodson, 19, who was gunned down in his Sunset home on Nov. 21. Carreras is accused of barging into the house and shooting Woodson to death in front of his girlfriend.

Woodson’s family members described Carreras’ facial expression in court as an “evil smile.” 

“I feel like he had zero remorse for what he did,” Travis Woodson, Hunter Woodson’s uncle, told the Tribune. “He was proud of what he did. He was acting like he’s proud of it.”

Court documents obtained by the newspaper allege that Carreras went to Woodson’s home the afternoon of the shooting after the pair messaged back and forth about a marijuana sale. They initially smoked a joint so Carreras could test the drug Woodson was selling, but the younger teen did not have cash on him, so he left. 

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He came back later in the day to buy 1 ½ ounces of the drug. Woodson did not have that much marijuana on hand, but told Carreras that he did. 

While he sent his 17-year-old girlfriend out to collect Carreras’ cash, Woodson filled a small, pink plastic bag with paprika, salt, pepper and other spices and taped it shut, the affidavit said. When Woodson’s girlfriend delivered the fake marijuana to Carreras, he felt the bag and sensed that something was not right.

As he ripped the bag open, the girl ran into the house to warn Woodson, the Tribune reported

Carreras followed her inside and into Woodson’s bedroom, where the girl hid behind the door while Woodson took a fighting stance, the affidavit said. 

The girl told police that when Carreras walked into the room with a gun, Woodson asked, “What are you going to do about it, shoot me?”

Carreras did just that, firing “a lot of times” and causing Woodson to fall to the floor, the girl told investigators. He then stood over Woodson and continued shooting. 

Before he fled, he rifled through Woodson’s pockets for his cash, the affidavit said. 

Carreras was arrested less than 30 minutes later at his home, where officers found him trying to crawl under a car to hide, the Tribune said

Woodson’s obituary described him as a high school senior who, “after hitting a rough patch … was getting his life turned around.” He had started taking some college courses and was looking forward to the future, his family wrote.

“You could usually find Hunter with his shaggy hair and charismatic smile doing what he loved more than anything else, eating,” the obituary read

“Hunter loved skateboarding, playing football and doing MMA,” his family wrote. “He was training for his first fight. He also loved the outdoors and spending time with family.”

Police officials who searched Carreras’ home after the shooting found hundreds of pill bottles, guns, ammunition and two machetes in a shed on the property, the Tribune reported in December. They also found scales used to measure drug amounts and “marijuana shake,” or small bits of plant matter that remain after larger nuggets are bagged or used, on the floor.

When investigators opened the shed door, they found a man sitting inside with a sword, the Tribune reported. He dropped the weapon and was arrested without incident.

Prior to his move to the adult jail, Carreras was held in a juvenile detention facility. His pending assault charge stems from a Dec. 22 incident in which he is accused of kicking the leg of a juvenile detention staff member. 

2 more Carnival cruise ships fail health inspections

Two of the newest ships in the Carnival Cruise Lines fleet have received failing grades in health inspections designed to control the spread of gastrointestinal illnesses

Carnival Vista and Carnival Breeze both scored below a passing grade of 86, the Miami Herald reported.Vista, the cruise line's newest ship, received a 79 while Breeze was given a 77. 

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Vista's crew hid potentially hazardous food, equipment and dirty dishware from the inspectors from the Centers for Disease Control, the Herald reported. The buffet included fruit flies, and on-board illnesses were not documented appropriately, according to the December report by the CDC's Prevention’s Vessel Sanitation Program.

Previously, a November report cited a failing score of 78 for Carnival Triumph, an older ship that gained notoriety in 2013 when an engine room fire caused it to lose propulsion and left passengers with few working bathrooms and no air conditioning. 

RELATED: 300 who got sick on cruise ship back in South Florida

Three failing grades on three different ships within two months is fairly rare for a major cruise line, the Herald story said. Most failures involve smaller ships from lesser-known cruise lines, a maritime lawyer said.

Carnival said that the health and well-being of its guests and crew is its "foremost priority." Spokesman Jennifer De La Cruz said the company has "taken immediate action to address the issues identified during recent ship inspections."

Though it hasn't been published by the CDC, the Triumph was re-inspected and received a passing score of 98, De La Cruz said.

• More from the Miami Herald

Reports: North and South Korea to form joint Olympic team, march together in opening ceremony

South Korea and North Korea have agreed to create a joint Olympic team and march together in the opening ceremony in the next Winter Olympics, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.

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The two countries met for the second time in a week Monday to discuss the possibility of creating a joint ice hockey team for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.

The nations also agreed to create a joint North and South Korean women's ice hockey team for the Olympics in Pyeongchang. This will be the first unified team for the two countries since they joined together for an international table-tennis championship and a youth soccer match in 1991.

North and South Korea have never marched together under one flag in any Olympic games.

Betsy DeVos: Common Core is dead at U.S. Department of Education

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos gave a far-ranging speech today in Washington at an American Enterprise Institute conference, “Bush-Obama School Reform: Lessons Learned.”

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She announced the death of Common Core, at least in her federal agency.

DeVos also decried the federal government’s initiatives to improve education. “We saw two presidents from different political parties and philosophies take two different approaches. Federally mandated assessments. Federal money. Federal standards. All originated in Washington, and none solved the problem. Too many of America’s students are still unprepared,” she said.

And she touched on a favorite topic, school choice.

“Choice in education is not when a student picks a different classroom in this building or that building, uses this voucher or that tax-credit scholarship. Choice in education is bigger than that. Those are just mechanisms,” she said. “It’s about freedom to learn. Freedom to learn differently. Freedom to explore. Freedom to fail, to learn from falling and to get back up and try again. It’s freedom to find the best way to learn and grow… to find the exciting and engaging combination that unlocks individual potential.”

Read DeVos’s speech at MyAJC.com.

How well would you do on the cognitive test President Trump took?

On Tuesday, Admiral Dr. Ronny Jackson answered questions about President Donald Trump’s health, reporting that after last week’s physical exam, Trump was in “excellent” health.

In addition to a physical exam, Trump, Jackson said, asked that he be given a cognitive screening test – one that would test for signs of early dementia, for instance.

Jackson said Trump was given the Montreal Cognitive Assessment test – a series of questions asking the test taker to remember a list of words, recognize animals, draw a specific time on a clock and draw a cube, among other tasks.

How well did the president do on the test? He was perfect, Jackson said, getting 30 out of 30 possible points. A score of 26 or higher on the test is considered to be a normal result

Below is a MoCA test like the one the president took. Can you get 26 or higher?

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