Hmm. From what I've heard they're actually pretty good - in QLD at least? I don't know much about the other states' RSPCA centres. I think they do the best with what they've got - they rely on charity funding and the money they get from adoptions, so it's hard to do the 'right thing' when there are few homes going about and less cages. They can only take care of so many animals at once. There's a centre in Fairfield, Brisbane, and I believe they have horses there as well, which cost a lot of money to take care of, as well as the dozens of cats and dogs (and other small animals). Especially the ones that come in and need loads of medical treatment. I feel guilty because I've personally never adopted a dog from the RSPCA (I've only had control over two dogs and where they come from because of my age), however we did have an RSPCA rescue about 20 years ago, a german shepherd x dingo called Beau. Amazing dog, very gentle and sweet, but had such a roaming instinct. He would get out every other week (mainly because the neighbour hated us and would let him out lol), and the Council kept picking him up and fining us. He actually came to us okay, but the night we got him he got super sick and the vet thought he would die - so much for their medical attention . He was okay though.
But, now you mention it..I had a friend get a cat from the RSPCA, she was supposed to be desexed and all that, but she got pregnant within a month of coming home. Funny, huh?
But yeah, I do feel slightly guilty about not adopting. I have very specific breed preferences though, and so I prefer to get them from breeders. I actually got Bonnie from a farm litter, which I suppose is technically a backyard breeder but I don't actually have a problem with a lot of backyard breeders (especially not off a farm because I know they have a number of working dogs, and it may be they planned a different litter from the bitch later on). You can always tell if the dogs are well cared for, and whether the person backing it has money or the dogs in mind.
My next dog (which is some time away but still), will be a german shepherd. I haven't decided where to get it, but I was strongly considering the RSPCA - maybe not such a good idea after all? Would it be better to go to a GSD-specifc rescue shelter? I don't know. One one hand I like to think they do the best they can with limited funds, but on the other, maybe their cash isn't so limited and they're skimping..