By: Rebecca Rose, In Clover founder and product developer

According to the Nielsen Company, 58 million pounds of chocolate candy will be sold this week. We know our dogs should not eat chocolate, but how much is dangerous, and what about the cat, or the bird? Is chocolate bad for them, too?

In light of the upcoming holiday, here is a review on why chocolate is bad for our pets. The culprits in chocolate are the high amounts of caffeine-like stimulants known as theobromine. Animals metabolize theobromine more slowly and can experience theobromine poisonings from as little as 1.5 ounces of chocolate for small dogs or cats and 1 pound for a 50-60 pound dog. Birds, due to their small size and rapid metabolism, are even more at risk for the toxic effects of chocolate. Dark chocolate is the most dangerous for pets and white chocolate has the lowest amount of theobromine, although it has the highest fat content. Symptoms of theobromine poisoning include vomiting, excessive thirst, diarrhea, hyperactivity and abnormal heart rhythm.