The role of local intestinal nerves in the nutrient-induced intestinal hyperemia was investigated in jejunal segments of anesthetized dogs by comparing the hyperemic effect of intraluminal glucose and oleic acid solutions before and after mucosal anesthesia and infusions of methysergide, hexamethonium, and tetrodotoxin. Methysergide, hexamethonium, and tetrodotoxin all failed to alter either the vascular or metabolic responses to luminal placement of glucose or oleic acid. The increases in blood flow and oxygen uptake produced by glucose or oleic acid, however, were blocked or attenuated after exposing the mucosa to dibucaine. The effect was norepinephrine due to an altered vascular response to vasoactive substances as dibucaine did not alter vascular responses to isoproterenol or norepinephrine. Dibucaine, however, inhibited active transport and increased passive transport of glucose across rat intestinal sacs in vitro. Oxygen consumption of the canine jejunal mucosa was also inhibited by dibucaine in vitro. It seems that inhibition of the nutrient-induced intestinal hyperemia by dibucaine is due, at least in part, to its effect on oxygen consumption and glucose transport of the mucosal epithelial cells. Nutrient-induced hyperemia appears not to be neurally mediated but more closely related to metabolism.