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"Science fiction and science have always danced around each other. Science fiction is the subconscious of science."
- Greg Bear

False Animal Repairman  
  A specialized roboticist who repaired robotic animals.  

An hour later, in the company truck, he had picked up the first malfunctioning animal for the day. An electric cat: it lay in the plastic dust-proof carrying cage in the rear of the truck and panted erratically. You'd almost think it was real, Isidore observed as he headed back to the Van Ness Pet Hospital - that carefully misnamed little enterprise which barely existed in the tough, competitive world of false-animal repair...

When he had parked his truck on the roof of the Van Ness Pet Hospital he quickly carried the plastic cage containing the inert false cat downstairs to Hannibal Stoat...

"What do you have there?" Mr. Stoat asked.

"A cat with a short in its power supply," Isidore set the cage down...

"Why show it to me? Stoat demanded. "Take it down the shop to Milt." However, reflexively, he opened the cage and tugged the false animal out. Once, he had been a repairman. A good one.

From Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick.
Published by Doubleday in 1968
Additional resources -

Here's another bit:

"...they break down and then everyone in the building knows. I've had it at the repair shop six times, mostly little malfunctions, but if anyone saw them - for instance one time the voice tape broke or anyhow got fouled and it wouldn't stop baaing - they'd recognize it as a mechanical breakdown." He added, "The repair outfit's truck is of course marked 'animal hospital something'..."

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
  More Ideas and Technology by Philip K. Dick
  Tech news articles related to Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?
  Tech news articles related to works by Philip K. Dick

False Animal Repairman-related news articles:
  - Sony Aibo Robotic Dog Now With No Repairmen

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