Authorities say a family dog helped searchers find a 2-year-old boy who was lost on a chilly night in a central Minnesota cornfield.

Authorities say a family dog helped searchers find a 2-year-old boy who was lost on a chilly night in a central Minnesota cornfield.

The toddler was playing with siblings outside his home in Richmond last week when he wandered away. The Stearns County Sheriff's Office says family members called authorities after they failed to locate him as it grew dark.

Sheriff's Lt. Vic Weiss tells the Star Tribune that searchers could hear a dog barking, then State Patrol troopers in a helicopter used a heat-seeking device to pick up the heat from the dog and the boy. The dog hadn't left the child's side.

Weiss says the dog was in protection mode and played a major role in finding the boy about three hours after he disappeared.