Perfusion imaging is crucial in imaging of ischemic stroke to determine 'tissue at risk' for infarction. In this study we compared the volumetric quantification of the perfusion deficit in two rat middle-cerebral-artery occlusion (MCAO) models using two gadolinium-based contrast agents (P1152 (Guerbet) and Magnevist (Bayer-Schering, Pittsburgh, PA, USA)) as compared with our well established continuous arterial spin labeling (CASL) perfusion imaging technique. Animals underwent either permanent MCAO or transient MCAO with 80-min reperfusion. Imaging was performed at four different time points after MCAO. A region-of-interest (ROI) analysis of the subregions of the ischemic zone (core, penumbra, transient reversal (TR), and sustained reversal (SR)) using P1152 showed significant reduction in blood flow in the core and TR subregions relative to the penumbral and SR subregions while occluded. After reperfusion, a significant increase in blood flow was recorded at all time points after reperfusion in all regions except TR. From the ROI analysis the threshold for the penumbra was determined to be -62+/-11% and this value was subsequently used for quantification of the volumetric deficit. The ischemic volume as defined by dynamic susceptibility contrast (DSC), was only statistically different from the CASL-derived ischemic volume when using Magnevist at post-reperfusion time points.