As the storm surrounding the RSPCA's fundraising practices, the charity confirmed it receives 3.5% of its donations from animal lovers north of the border, despite the fact that it does not operate in Scotland. The charity's income from one-off and regular donations was £35m last year.
As reported in The Herald on Tuesday, the RSPCA, the world's most well-known animal welfare charity, was accused by the Scottish SPCA of "stealing food from the mouths of Scotland's animals" by deliberately fundraising in Scotland, and misleading donors by refusing to clarify the issue on its publicity material.
Yesterday MSP Christine Grahame, who sits on the Scottish Parliament's animal welfare committee, laid down a motion demanding that the charity pay back all money raised in Scotland over the last decade and change its advertising and fundraising materials.
In a statement, the RSPCA denied deliberately fundraising in Scotland and claimed to direct Scottish donors to the Scottish SPCA.
However, when The Herald made a donation to the charity online, no such direction was made, despite using a Glasgow postcode. When the donation was made by phone, using the same postcode, the operator pointed out that "Scotland has its own animal charity" and asked if she should withdraw the cash pledge. However, she did not say that the RSPCA only operates in England and Wales.
The Herald also spoke to an animal lover who has been donating to the RSPCA for the past 15 years, unaware that her money would not help animals in Scotland. Barbara Smith, 64, from Paisley, unwittingly sent £10 cheque to the charity on Monday.
"Until this week I assumed the RSPCA was a UK-wide charity," said Ms Smith. "I was shocked and very angry when I discovered through press coverage that this isn't the case. I've given them hundreds of pounds over the years, but I won't be giving them any more. From now on my money will go to the Scottish SPCA."
The Scottish SPCA said it had been "overwhelmed" with hundreds of donations and messages of support since launching a hard-hitting campaign, featuring a starving dog next to the line: "The RSPCA won't save me."
Scottish SPCA chief executive Stuart Earley said: "The RSPCA previously said it did not raise money in Scotland, but by its own admission this is clearly not the case.
"For all charities in the current economic climate, every single pound donated is extremely valuable. Any figure up to £1.25m may not be much to a the RSPCA, but it would make an enormous difference to us. It would run our Glasgow rescue centre for two years."
Commenting specifically on The Herald's donation experiences, Mr Earley added: "If the RSPCA is referring people from Scotland to ourselves, that signals a change in its policy and we are, of course, pleased.
"However, it is both unfortunate and in keeping with our past experiences to learn that the RSPCA is continuing to accept online donations from Scotland."
A spokeswoman for the RSPCA said she could not confirm the exact amount of donations given by Scottish donors last year, but admitted it was 3.5% of the total amount - as much as £1.25m. She also confirmed that, in light of The Herald's findings, the charity would consider changing its internet donation policy.