Sunny Obama: Terror of Toddlers

Sunny briefly took down a toddler during the White House Christmas decor reveal.

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First Lady Michelle Obama pulls on her dog Sunny as two-year-old Ashtyn Gardner takes a tumble during the White House Christmas decorations viewing in Washington, D.C, on Dec. 4, 2013.
First Lady Michelle Obama pulls Sunny Obama back as two-year-old Ashtyn Gardner takes a tumble during the White House Christmas decorations ceremony.

Forget all the tinsel, the bows, the ornaments and the trees - it was a dog that stole all the attention this Christmas at the White House.

Sunny Obama, the real and the fake, made her holiday debut Wednesday afternoon as the White House gave its first guided tour of this year's decorations. The fake Sunny Obama, a mechanical one made of satin ribbon and stationed with brother, Bo, in the Booksellers room, was so lifelike she made first lady Michelle Obama do a double take.

[READ: Obama Goes to the Dogs]

"And I was surprised to see last night, this year they actually move, they're mechanical," Obama saidd. "This is a new step -- we're stepping up in the world of Bo-and-Sunny honoring."

The first dog display wasn't the only display Sunny Obama made.

The real Portuguese Water Dog made quite the commotion as she entered the State Dining Room and promptly knocked over a toddler. Two-year-old Ashtyn Gardner plopped to the floor, horrifying the first lady.

Obama quickly comforted Gardner and got her back to crafting with the other kids, visiting the White House with their military families. Later the Mobile, Ala., native nodded to Whispers that she was OK.

This year's White House holiday theme was "Gather Around." Besides the big moving dogs, old books were a prominent feature in the decor. They were used to construct Christmas trees and as planters. (We even spotted a Danielle Steel novel among them.)

In the Red Room, there was a floral "cranberry tree," which was completely made out of sugar. And speaking of sweet, this year's Gingerbread House sat on top of a completely edible fireplace made of Gingerbread and Springerle cookies. The Gingerbread House itself had stained sugar windows that looked like real White House scenes: the Marine Band was playing in one, while the White House fountain out front was really working. And, of course, the Gingerbread House wouldn't be complete without miniature replicas of Bo and Sunny.

More photos from the event:


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