Objective: To determine by laser Doppler imaging (LDI) the spatial and temporal characteristics of the changes in cerebral blood flow (CBF) in response to electrical forepaw stimulation in rats before and during acute unilateral carotid occlusion. Background Data: Single laser Doppler (LD) probes provide a minimally invasive approach for measuring CBF changes due to functional stimulation. Using an electrical forepaw stimulation model in rats, we have previously demonstrated a prolongation in the temporal dynamics of the CBF response during acute mechanical carotid occlusion. However, the spatial resolution of this model system was limited by the diameter of the single LD probe. Recently, we have successfully used LDI, which uses an optically driven low power laser beam to measure CBF changes in two dimensions, to investigate the spatial and temporal changes in CBF due to forepaw stimulation. Methods: LDI was used to measure the spatial and temporal characteristics of the changes in CBF response in α-chloralose anesthetized rats (n = 5) both before and during acute unilateral occlusion of the common carotid contralateral to the forepaw stimulated. Results: Acute mechanical occlusion of the common carotid contralateral to the forepaw stimulated did not affect the area of activation due to functional stimulation. However, the amplitude of the CBF response was significantly reduced compared to prior to occlusion. Further, acute occlusion led to a significant prolongation of temporal dynamics of the CBF response. These observations are in agreement with previous results we have obtained using a single LD probe. Conclusions: Our results suggest a promising role for the application of LDI to study the spatial and temporal characteristics of CBF changes in animal models and may allow a diagnostic technique for testing patients with carotid occlusion.