Their say ....

2011 was an extremely busy year for the Scottish SPCA and we were particularly active in the Lothians, caring for almost a thousand animals at our Balerno-based animal rescue and rehoming centre.

Nationally, we saw the number of animals in our care leap from 12,600 to 13,437, while calls to our helpline remained extremely high at 180,556, just under 500 a day.

Meanwhile, our inspectors and animal rescue officers attended 50,039 incidents which was staggering and put a massive strain on our resources.

It’s hard to be sure if cruelty itself is increasing as we also have to consider that our profile has never been higher and more people than ever before are aware of how we can help.

Prevention itself is at the heart of our work and we have been delighted with the success of our free education programme which reached more than 60 per cent of primary schools and over 160,000 children in 2011, including 86 per cent of primary schools and 8,117 children in West Lothian.

We are very thankful for the support we receive and we believe Scotland is still largely a nation of animal lovers. It is clear though that cruelty to animals is still a serious issue in this country.

Chief Superintendent Mike Flynn MBE

Scottish SPCA

Animal Helpline 03000 999 999