What Are the Treatments for Hernias in Dogs?

Written by megan allyce snider
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Hernias can occur, and can be fixed by vets, rather easily. Symptoms of hernias in dogs are rapid breathing, coughing, excessive salivation, weight loss, vomiting, fever and lethargy. In most cases, the vets trim the exposed area and sew protrusions back into the body.

Perineal Hernias

Perineal hernias can happen to both dogs and cats. They occur when there is an abnormal placement of pelvic or abdominal muscles into the region around the anus, called the perineum. They do not require emergency surgery unless the bladder is involved and prohibits the animal from urinating. If surgery is needed, the dog is given an epidural, and a procedure known as an internal obturator muscle flap technique is used, which creates a new pelvic diaphragm out of the transposed muscle flap.

Umbilical Hernias

An umbilical hernia occurs when the abdominal contents press out against a weak spot in the body wall at the area of the umbilicus. The surgery for an umbilical hernia requires a purse-string suture, which pulls the hole in the body wall shut when it is tightened, keeping the contents of the abdominal contents sewn within the body.

Inguinal Hernias

An inguinal hernia often occurs in the hind part of the dog where the legs meet the abdomen. It usually occurs after injury, and surgery is recommended. First the hernial contents must be manually reduced, and then the surgeon must sew contents up into the hernial sac.

Diaphragmatic Dog Hernias

In this type of hernia, the muscles of the diaphragm are ruptured and vital organs crowd the chest area. During surgery for this condition, a vet will attach the stomach to the abdominal wall to prevent protrusions.


If you suspect your dog has a hernia, take it to the vet immediately. The faster the hernia is fixed, the less pain it will cause your pet in the long run.

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