Grace, who appeared with Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane in “It's Only A Play,” has lived with DesRoche for about three years. She had previously belonged to a client who thought the dog would be happier with Lydia.
Bob is a relatively new addition to the menagerie.
Bob was found in late April, hopping around a friend's farm animal sanctuary in upstate New York. He'd gotten into a scrape with some other rabbits, then escaped his enclosure.
DesRoche helped wrangle the bunny with the aid of a carrot.
Then she brought the rabbit to the vet, where he was neutered, and DesRoche figured she'd take care of him while he healed.
Bob has such an extroverted, charming personality, DesRoche soon became smitten.
"I don't know how I got a bunny," she says. "Bob was supposed to go back to the sanctuary."
Grace might have been thinking much the same thing — at least at first.
DesRoche has spent a couple of years teaching Grace to be calm and friendly around her pet rats — who are also veteran stage performers. This involves a lot of rewarding Grace for behaving calmly when they’re around. (DesRoche is extremely careful about these interactions. The moment anyone isn't having fun, she steps in.)
But Grace was "initially very reactive to Bob the bunny," DesRoche says.
Others took to Bob more quickly — like Petunia the rat, who felt confident enough to steal some of Bob's food right out of his mouth.
Soon Grace and Bob were hanging out in bed, snacking together, even mimicking each other — Bob learning from Grace that it's fun to roll over for belly rubs, Grace, in turn, discovering the joy of vegetables.