Nationwide last year, the RSPCA received 70,514 dogs at its pounds. Of those, 19,276 were rehomed but nearly 24,000 were put down.
And both those figures are growing. In fact, the number of dogs received in shelters and pounds has gone up by more than 20 per cent in five years.
The RSPCA's NSW chief, Steve Coleman, says he "pleads" with anyone looking to acquire a dog to consider adopting one from a shelter or pound rather than go to a shop.
"'Why would you go anywhere else but come to the RSPCA to help us with the oversupply and allow us to make a serious fit between you and the animal?" he said. "We know when an animal goes out the door it is desexed, it is microchipped, it is vaccinated and it's been behaviourly tested so we are very confident that the animal is going to make a great pet.
"If we could replace even 20 per cent of animals that are sourced from breeders with shelter and pound animals … in time we could start to tip the balance in terms of that oversupply."
More details of animals at RSPCA shelters seeking homes can be found at adoptapet.com.au.