Veterinarians


Dean J. Cerf, DVM, PA  Director

Dr. Cerf graduated from Cornell University in 1978 and upon graduation was awarded the Malcolm E. Miller Award for Scholastic Achievement.  With over 30 years of experience, Dr. Cerf is an accomplished veterinarian who has participated in national and international seminars teaching other veterinarians laser applications and surgery.  He has developed new laser surgical techniques including Ultrasound Guided Endoscopic Laser Ablation (UGELAB) which is an innovative technique for treating transitional cell carcinoma (cancer) of the canine urinary bladder. His commitment to animals and the people who love them is demonstrated by his endless pursuit to find new and creative means to diagnose, treat and cure disease, as he states, "to begin where medical books end." 

His family includes his wife Carole Niclasse, an avian wildlife artist, his daughter Dr. Tara Johnson, and his son Dr. Travis Cerf. His animal family includes Buttons an Amazon parrot, Jasmine a Pionus parrot, and Chinese Crested Powder Puffs Willow, Gypsy, Cocoa and Jade. Along with two other "rescues", Zoe a Yorkie and Lulu, a Chihuahua and a pond full of Koi, Dr. Cerf describes their home as "No Vacancies". Dr. Cerf enjoys skiing, golf, scuba diving, reading and traveling to remote locations where he and his wife Carole can study nature while she captures wildlife on canvas.  His newest challenges include learning how to play piano and guitar and improving his proficiency in Spanish, German, Swiss-German, Hindu, and Swahili. 

Dr. Cerf is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, The American Animal Hospital Association, the New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, the Northern New Jersey Medical Association, The Veterinary Laser Society, The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, The Veterinary Endoscopy Society, The Veterinary Cancer Society, the Veterinary Co-operative Oncology Group, The American Association of Feline Practitioners, and the Association of Avian Veterinarians. He served two terms as President of the Northern New Jersey Veterinary Medical Association, was a Trustee of the New Jersey Veterinary Education Foundation for six years and currently serves as Trustee of The Louis and Celia Trust for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. 


Joanne Healey, DVM, CVA, Assistant Medical Director

Dr. Healey offers acupuncture consultations and treatments and homeopathic care as well as traditional veterinary medicine. Combining Eastern and Western medicine improves patient care and treatment success. Dr. Healey is a graduate of The University of Illinois at Champagne, Urbana. Dr. Healey has a special interest in Internal Medicine, Surgery, Cardiology, and Geriatrics. Her belief is in practicing the highest level of quality medicine to all animals, with a strong emphasis on preventative care. She is a member of the following Veterinary Associations: American Animal Hospital Association, American Veterinary Medical Association, NJ Veterinary Medical Association, American Association of Feline Practitioners, Northern NJ Veterinary Medical Association, International Veterinary Acupuncture Society and Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture. Dr. Healey's pet family includes a Yorkie Sebastian and domestic shorthair cat Halle.

Maribeth Hartwick, DVM

Dr. Hartwick graduated from The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine in June 1994. Prior to and throughout veterinary school, she had an 8 year career as a registered nurse in medicine and surgery. Dr. Hartwick received multiple community service awards as Vice President of her veterinary class, earned the Senior Small Animal Surgery Award for Excellence and the Salsbury Scholarship, awarded for leadership and scholarship. She joined RVH in July 2006 after practicing in New Hampshire for 12 years. Dr. Hartwick has an interest in Internal Medicine, surgery, dentistry, geriatrics, ophthalmology and sports medicine. She is a member of the American Veterinary Medicine Association, American Animal Hospital Association, American Association of Feline Practitioners, NJ Veterinary Medical Association, New England Veterinary Medical Association, and the International Sled Dog Association. Dr. Hartwick's pet family includes an 8 year old male black Labrador Retriever named Buck ("Buckeye"). Her hobbies include cycling (road and mountain biking), hiking, kayaking, skiing, sailing and scuba diving. She enjoys family, traveling, cooking reading and music. Go Buckeyes!

Bethanne Lokuta, DVM 

Dr. Lokuta, a graduate of Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, has been in practice for 10 years. She loves caring for dogs, cats, and other small mammals, and is especially fond of neonatal and geriatric care. A long time resident of New Jersey, she has traveled all over the Carribean, Central and South America, and the United States. She also participated in a research project to study Charles Darwin’s Finches in the Galapagos Islands. Dr. Lokuta is a member of the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Veterinary Medical Association. Her pet family includes three cats, Fikus, Pip, and Kitty. She has a passion for audiobooks, crocheting, needlework, and other crafts.

Christopher Drastura, DVM

Dr. Drastura is a graduate of the Western University of Health Sciences in Pomona, California. He spent the last year at Animal Specialty Group, which is a large, very active specialty group in Los Angeles. As an intern, he experienced intense special training in small animal surgery, internal medicine, neurology, and emergency critical care. Dr. Drastura has special interests in canine and feline emergency medicine and internal medicine. During his initial term at Ridgewood Veterinary Hospital, he will be spending his time in surgery with Dr. Cerf to develop this expertise as well. For personal interests, Dr. Drastura enjoys going down to the shore with family and friends. In addition to this, he has interests in hiking and sports, such as football, hockey, and soccer. He is also learning to play golf on his time off.