Mouth That Roars

Bill Liblick has made a name for himself of National TV Talk Shows where he spouted his outspoken views from the front row. Now he offers you his opinion every week in the "MOUTH THAT ROARS" Column in the Sullivan County Post.

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December 9th, 2011

Gerow leads fight for Sullivan County Humane Society

As mentioned last week, Sullivan County has literally no resources for unwanted dogs and cats. According to Town of Liberty Constable and Dog Control Officer Joanne Gerow we painfully have no substantial facility to house animals involved in seizure, cruelty, and abandonment. Joanne wants to change all that with the creation of a Humane Society in Sullivan County, but she needs help.

Thanks to a plan designed by Joanne four years ago, a contract was developed between the Town of Liberty and Sullivan County to allow her to assist with and house dogs that are the victims of cruelty and abandonment seized by the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department. She does this for dogs with an old tractor trailer that BOCES turned into a kennel, but it is not enough.

Although her main servicing area is the Town and Village of Liberty, Joanne has also serviced other towns and villages in emergencies. “I always try to help people, even outside my responsibilities. I have taken in animals for people and even housed them in my home.”

“There are so many Sullivan County residents that love animals, so many people that would be willing to give time, money, etc. Without organization or a plan, there is no direction. I can only do so much. If we were united, with a game plan, things would fall into place more easily.”

Former Town of Liberty Supervisor Frank DeMayo labeled Joanne Gerow “one of the finest public servants” he worked with.

DeMayo told me, “Her concern and knowledge for the care of animals, and her willingness to help at all times is testimony in her dedication to the animals and residents of Sullivan County. I wish I had another term in office to help her realize her vision for more efficient and humane facilities for the countywide care of animals in need. I strongly suggest that government officials pay attention to her because she has a heartfelt passion for the proper care of animals and she really knows her stuff.”

Many of the horror stories Joanne tells involving cruelty to animals is mind blowing. Equally disturbing is the lack of concern coming from many governmental officials as to the need do something about it and our stray animal population.

Stressing the need of a Human Society in Sullivan County, Joanne noted that although the Middletown Humane Society is contracted to take municipality dogs after the mandatory New York State holding period, they have no room for our adoptable dogs because they have gone non kill.

“The sad reality is that there are not enough homes for all stray dogs and cats. There has to be a triage when it comes to addressing these animals and hard choices must be made. It is certainly a travesty for healthy adoptable dogs to die, while risky, aggressive dogs are sitting for months at these facilities.”

Those who would like to assist Joanne in her drive to create a Sullivan County Humane Society can contact her through her website Next week the remarkable changes at the SPCA.

1 comment to Gerow leads fight for Sullivan County Humane Society

  • Fran Brown

    I truly hope the communities will get behind this endeavor as Joanne has proven over and over her abilities and desire to improve the situations that arise in her county and even further. State and county funding is needed here. I know that Joanne went to retreive animals in Katrina and has gone beyond the limit to aid animals when needed. She and the surrounding area needs a facility. Possibly a local young veterinarion could see benefit in her endeavors and become pro active in the building a new facility for the good of the county(s). There is no better person for the job than Joanne. I hope this becomes a reality, it certainly is needed.
    Sincerely yours,
    Frandel Brown