the cheaper ro-pets look like mechines, but the expsnsive ones look like Tia, or even real household pets. with examples of everything in between.
expensive ones with synthetic flesh would need a sense of touch to prevent self inflicted damage. As such they would need some form of nervous system, be it purely synthetic, or if they utalized biological skin (like the T1000 from the therminator movies) they would utalize an interface between there computer brain and the nervous system inherant in the biological skin.
we can now transfer signals from nerve endings to cables as shown in lab experiments with mice, so this is perfectly feasible.
as for how common biological inelligences are... well, we have Ro-pets and AI, predictable and instantly replicatable. why do we want squishey biological intellegences that take decades to mature to an uncertain result with no way of ensuring they don't rise up against there human overlords?
Very rare is the answer. Though I don't think she'll be rising up against her human opressors any time soon. gonna have to watch out for those dangerous teenage years mind ^^
this now gives us one of two possible leads.
1) the class will belittle the miraculous creature of science and magic, squandering humanities connection to these creatures in the future.
2) the class will be fascinated and intrigued with Celestia and start asking questions that are hard to explain. <br / />
that's still a part of number 1.
you see if the children excepted little Celestia as a magical "Creature" they would treat her as a living sentient being.
belittling would include (but is not limited to) thinking she is a toy, animatronic, or lower intelligence animal.
I mean... have you seen some of those Hollywood stars' animal ? A pink-dyed pony, with a glued horn wouldn't be that strange in our reality.
I find this quite interesting.
It wouldn't matter how much you disguised a pony. you could never make it look anything like Tia. similarly, Tia is unmistakably NOT a natural pony.