The figures were released as part of the animal welfare charity’s ‘Cancel Out Cruelty’ campaign.
With more people becoming dog owners during lockdown the charity is concerned the number of cruelty incidents involving canines will increase - particularly in the summer when it traditionally sees a surge in calls to its cruelty line.
RSPCA dog welfare expert Dr Samantha Gaines said: “Every year, we see many dogs coming into our care bearing the physical and mental scars that were inflicted at the hands of the very people who were meant to keep them safe and love them unconditionally.
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“We are supposed to be a nation of animal lovers and dogs are man’s best friend as the saying goes but in reality we receive many cruelty reports every day about dogs who have suffered the most unimaginable cruelty and a 16% increase of dogs being cruelly treated in a year is really concerning.
“Our officers have dealt with all sorts of horrific incidents including dogs repeatedly beaten, stabbed, burned, drowned, poisoned, some have been left to die from starvation.
“With the public’s help in reporting cruelty they have been able to save many dogs from ongoing abuse. Sadly though in some cases others have died at the hands of their tormentors and it is then our job to try and bring some justice for the victim.
“This year the cost of living crisis has added a further dimension and we believe we could see people really struggling to care for their pets which may lead them to lash out or could see more animals than ever being abandoned or given up.
“All these factors mean that we need the public’s support more than ever to help Cancel Out Cruelty.
“As a charity, we are bracing to tackle a summer of suffering but we cannot do this without your help and we rely on public support to carry on our rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming work.”
Click here to find out more about the Cancel Out Cruelty campaign.