The conformation of the urethra, the position of the bladder neck and the distance between the external urethral orifice and the cranial pubic brim were compared in 30 continent and 30 incontinent bitches with incompetence of the urethral sphincter mechanism, using the measurements made from vagino-urethrograms. The bladder neck was significantly (P less than 0.001) further caudal in incontinent dogs than in continent dogs. Its position was not affected by neutering and could not be explained by the degree of urethral curvature. The distance from the external urethral orifice to the cranial pubic brim was correlated (P less than 0.001) with bodyweight but was not significantly different in the continent and incontinent bitches. In neutered animals, the distance between the cranial pubic brim and the external urethral orifice was significantly (P less than 0.05) shorter than in entire animals.