She went to the holiday party for the stables I ride at back earlier in the month. She met the horses -- and surprisingly, she and the neurotic Arabian mare (Coalby) got along very well. I've been told to bring her back more, since it might even be good for Coalby to socialize more. There's a picture of the two of them in the Claire gallery of my real gallery (not my Livejournal scrapbook), along with other new puppy-pix.
In the past few weeks, Claire has finally figured out how to go up stairs, and (more recently) how to go down stairs. Now she can run everywhere in the house, to her glee. Unfortunately, when she comes up to my room and brings toys, this means many trips up three floors of stairs (with a toy in mouth), dropping it in a corner, then going back down to get another, etc. Poor puppy.
For Christmas, the puppy got a new 'spill-proof' waterdish from Brent and Jen. (It took Claire five minutes to figure out how to spill it.) She got a chew-toy from my Aunt Sally, and another (really solid, heavy) chew toy from my brother. From my parents, she got a bag of peanut butter 'buddy biscuits' from one of the local small markets. From me, she got some various edible goodies from Railey's Leash and Treat here in Fremont.
From shadowfey, she got an 'IQube,' which is a puppy toy for also seeing how intelligent they are. It's a little fabric cube with flaps on each side, and four squeaky balls inside. According to the directions, you're supposed to take the balls out, show them to the dog, play with them, then put them in the box while the dog watches. Repeat a second time, and supposedly the dog will get it. It says that intelligent dogs will get it 'in half an hour to an hour.'
I put the box down, Claire walked up, sniffed at it, and stuck her nose through one of the flaps. *squeak!* She pulled her head back, looked at the box for a moment, and then reached inside and pulled out one of the squeaky balls. Total time: less than a minute. She played with the ball for a bit, then pulled out the other three. Then? She proceeded to take some of her other favorite toys, stuff them into the fabric cube... and carry the cube up the stairs to my room. Wherein she took the toys out, and sat there clearly very pleased with herself at finding a way to carry all the toys in one trip.
At times, my dog scares me.
Of course, other times, I wonder about her. Tonight, she was up in my room, and had a little bit of food on her ear. I wanted to scrub it off, but she wanted me down nearer to her. So I decided, brilliantly, that instead of wetting a washcloth in the sink, I'd use the tub. So I kneel down, turn the water on... and the dog LEAPS into the tub and begins drinking from the faucet. When I turned the water off, she drank from the tub. When I made sure the tub had fully drained, she leapt back in and stuck her nose up in the faucet, trying to make it come on again and give her more water.
(She's not dehydrated, the vet assures me. In his words, "She just really, really loves water. It's a little odd, but I wouldn't worry: there are plenty of worse things she could really love.")
Ah, well. She's asleep now, and I'm going to do the same.