The amazing story unfolded in Elgin, South Carolina, USA, after a frantic mum dialled 911 when she realised her little boy had disappeared after apparently going into the kitchen to get some juice.
Search teams hunted all night for the tot, but he wasn't found until a neighbour heard crying coming from woods a quarter of a mile away the following morning.
There, the little boy was found wearing only a nappy and a T-shirt, but clinging on to the family's pet Labrador dog.
Emily DuBose, who lives in the same street as the child, told reporters: 'Since he belonged to them, he must have followed them the whole way, looking out for him, so that's very special.'
ABC News report the police as saying the dog appeared to have kept watch over the boy throughout the night, as temperatures plummeted into the 40s.
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Does your family pet have an unbreakable bond with your children?
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