Qoobo Headless Robotic Therapy Cat Was Anne McCaffrey's Idea
Or, the company calls the Qoobo a "tailed cushion that heals your heart". Not a headless robot cat. How does it work? You "storoke" it.
(Qoobo therapy robot)
A Tailed Cusion That Heals Your Heart
Qoobo is a therapeutic robot in the form of a cushion with a tail. When caressed, it waves gently. When rubbed, it swings playfully. And, it occasionally wags just to say hello. It's comforting communication that warms your heart the way animals do. Begin your "tail therapy" today and wrap yourself with fuzzy love.
I think this is a simplified version of what Anne McCaffrey called a "Pukha" in her 1990 novel The Rowan:
Pukhas, deriving their name from the imaginary companions discovered by needful children, had become widely used in pediatrics. They could be programmed for a variety of uses, but more often were used in surgical and long-term care with great effect and as surrogates for intense dependency cases...