A hernia is a passage or protrusion (pushing out) of all or part of an internal organ through an abnormal opening. Examples are umbilical (navel) hernias, inguinal (groin) hernias, and perineal (rectal) hernias.

Umbilical hernias -

are usually small, often containing only some fat tissue, and may not require surgery. If a large "belly button" hernia exists then surgery is best. These hernias are commonly repaired at the time the pet is spayed.

Inguinal hernias -

are usually in female dogs and often cause enough problems to make surgery recommended.

Perineal hernias -

are usually in male dogs and cause rectal straining. Surgery is often recommended for this type of hernia. Castration is often very helpful in helping to correct this type of hernia and reduce recurrence.

Hernias may be congenital (birth defect), develop due to a weakness of the muscle, or result from forceful injury.  Often the exact cause of the hernia is not known. Certain hernias can be dangerous if not treated correctly.


Surgery is often the best approach for the treatment of hernias. The bulging tissue is put back into the correct position and the weakened muscle is repaired. The overall success of the surgical repair depends also on the age of the pet (older pets heal more slowly) and the strength of the tissue.

    Due to the possibility of inherited muscle weakness, some hernias may recur.



Web site designed by Ed Acton for Tri-City Pet Hospital