After a goalless first half, Davie Selke fired the hosts in front just seconds into the restart, but the visitors left the German capital with a point thanks to an equaliser from former Manchester United man Shinji Kagawa.
The first period was a scrappy affair during which both sides struggled to create clear-cut chances, but there was almost controversy in the 33rd minute when Hertha were incorrectly awarded a corner and Niklas Stark's header from the resulting cross missed the target by mere inches.
Although Dortmund were disappointing in the final third during the first half, good link-up play between Kagawa and Jadon Sancho should have produced the opener in the 36th minute, but the England youth international attempted to square the ball to a teammate, rather than shoot from a clear scoring position.
The first half lacked flow, but the game came to life early in the second when Valentino Lazarol's low cross into the box was tucked away by Selke in front of goal to give Hertha the lead.
Dortmund responded by testing Thomas Kraft in the Hertha goal for the first time, Christian Pulisic weaving his way around two defenders and shooting from outside the box, forcing a routine stop out of the goalkeeper.
The home side should have doubled their advantage in the 63rd minute when former Chelsea man Salomon Kalou's strike was on its way across the line, only for his teammate Ondrej Duda to venture into an offside position in an attempt to usher it into the net.
There was an element of fortune about Dortmund's equaliser in the 71st minute, which came when Mitchell Weiser gave the ball away sloppily, allowing Sancho to surge forward and cross into the box for Kagawa to nod home from close range.
What started out as a scrappy contest showed signs of life in the closing stages as Dortmund heaped on the pressure in search of a winner, coming closest in the dying embers when Swedish starlet Alexander Isak crashed a shot against the crossbar.
A draw was not enough to help Dortmund leapfrog RB Leipzig and move into second place in the Bundesliga, nor was it enough to propel 11th-placed Hertha into the top 10.
HERTHA BERLIN (4-2-3-1): Kraft; Weiser, Stark, Lustenberger, Plattenhardt; Maier, Skjelbred; Lazaro, Duda (Leckie '77), Kalou (Darida '84); Selke
BORUSSIA DORTMUND (4-3-3): Burki; Piszczek, Sokratis, Otoprak, Toljan; Kagawa, Weigl, Gotze (Isak '67); Pulisic (Yarmolenko '85), Schurrle, Sancho