Psychostimulant drug abuse, dependence and withdrawal are associated with cognitive dysfunction and impact stress-sensitive systems. The corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) system orchestrates stress responses via CRF1 and CRF2 receptors and is implicated in substance use disorders. However, CRF2 role in psychostimulant drug-induced cognitive dysfunction remains to be elucidated. In the present study, wild-type and CRF2−/− mice are injected with cocaine and memory assessed by the novel object recognition (NOR) task throughout relatively long periods of drug withdrawal. Following recovery from the drug-induced memory deficits, the mice are stressed prior to the NOR task and brain gene expression evaluated by in situ hybridization. Cocaine impairs NOR memory in wild-type and CRF2−/− mice. However, following cocaine withdrawal NOR memory deficits last less time in CRF2−/− than in wild-type mice. Furthermore, a relatively mild stressor induces the re-emergence of NOR deficits in long-term cocaine-withdrawn wild-type but not CRF2−/− mice. Cocaine-withdrawn mice show a genotype-independent higher c-fos expression in the NOR memory-relevant perirhinal cortex than drug-naïve mice. However neither genotype nor drug withdrawal affect the expression of tyrosine hydroxylase in the ventral tegmental area or the locus coeruleus and CRF in the central nucleus of the amygdala or the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus, brain regions implicated in stress and drug responses. These data indicate a new role for the CRF2 receptor in cognitive deficits induced by cocaine withdrawal, both as regards to their duration and their re-induction by stress. Interestingly, prototypical brain stress systems other than CRF do not appear to be involved.