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The arrival of a particular type of technology, sociable robots, can challenge our understanding of companionship. Our focus is on robot pets, as these are finding their way into our families, schools, and nursing homes. In this paper we analyse two science fiction texts on robot dogs – Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451 (1954) and Isaac Asimov's A Boy's Best Friend (1974)– before concentrating on technology assessment, a scientific method to describe and extrapolate possible impacts of emergingdoi:10.5281/zenodo.4166345 fatcat:2jmjveobmncalljxgvxyozgcry