A 2-year-old boy lived with his dead mother for five days before he was found by police, FOX4KC.com reported.
Police in Manhattan, Kan., said the the toddler was lethargic and dehydrated but alive on Saturday when they got to the house, according to the station.
They believe his mother, 32-year-old Erin Yeager, died the previous Tuesday. Police found her body in a bedroom. Foul play was not suspected.
"I don't know that I've ever had a situation like this where a child is left at home alone with a deceased parent," Riley County Sheriff's Department Lt. Kurt Moldrup told FOX4KC.com.
The child was malnourished, thirsty and suffering from severe diaper rash when authorities got to him. He was drifting in and out of consciousness.
On Monday, the little boy had markedly improved and was "even flirting with the nurses," the station quoted police as saying.
Authorities are awaiting autopsy results to determine Yeager's cause of death.
Her estranged husband told police he tried to pick his baby up over the weekend, but didn't get an answer when he knocked on Yeager's door and called her on the phone — so he notified police.