“As to the future, our job is not to foresee it, but to enable it.” Antoine De St-Exupery

The Rhodesian Ridgeback Club of the United States’ Health & Genetics Committee is dedicated to helping breeders and owners find the tools and information they need for their dogs to lead long, healthy lives.

Thanks to significant advances in science and canine genetics, we are hopeful that the coming years will see breakthroughs in genetic markers and diagnostics for some of the challenging and complex diseases that our dogs face.

To that end, the RRCUS Health & Genetics Committee is very active (committee reports) in identifying health problems in our breed, contributing to genetic research in order to eliminate them from breeding programs, and informing owners about cutting-edge diagnostic and treatment options.  But in order for us to be successful, we need help from all Ridgebackers, owners and breeders alike.

There are many ways you can get involved: By participating in ongoing research, by logging on to our Comprehensive Ridgeback Health Survey or by making a tax-deductible donation to the Rhodesian Ridgeback Donor Advised Fund of the AKC’s Canine Health Foundation, which is earmarked for research that will directly benefit Ridgebacks.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to email the appropriate RRCUS Health & Genetics committee member listed below.

2009 RRCUS Health & Genetics Committee

Susan Ralston - Susan.Ralston@Merial.com or 801-829-3005 - H&G Committee Senior Chair; CHF Liaison; degenerative myelopathy project coordinator; epilepsy DNA collection coordinator; megaesophagus DNA collection coordinator; CHIC/OFA Liaison

Denise Flaim - Revodana@aol.com - H&G Committee Chair; National Specialty Liaison; DNA Liaison; cataract DNA collection coordinator, deafness DNA collection coordinator

Cynthia Willson, PhD - willson.cj@gmail.com - Cancer Liaison - MCT; osteosarcoma; lymphoma; hemangiosarcoma; mammary cancer; brain cancer

Melanie Behrens - melanieowl@aol.com - Allergic dermatitis collection coordinator

Cynthia McFadden - cjmcfadden@hotmail.com

Debra Driza - houndrat@aol.com 

Mike Teeling - - H&G webmaster 

Mary Teeling -


Lisa Miller, DVM - Selchi@aol.com - VRAC Chair

Susan Ralston, VMD - Susan.Ralston@Merial.com

Katrina Viviano, DVM - viviano@svm.vetmed.wisc.edu - Health Survey Coordinator  

Felicity Grzemski PhD - felicity.grzemski@pfizer.com 

Kirsten Timms PhD - kirsten_timms@hotmail.com

Elizabeth Mansfield M.Ed - etmansfield@gmail.com