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Wag’n Enterprises, LLC v. United Animal Nations

Summarized by: 

Date Filed: 05-09-2012
Case #: 1:11cv955
Brinkema
Full Text Opinion: http://docs.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/virginia/vaedce/1:2011cv00955/271421/71/

Trademarks: Unfounded and purely speculative concerns over confusion do not evince actual confusion by consumers.

Opinion (Brinkema): Wag’n Enterprises, LLC. (Wag’n) alleged United Animal Nations (UAN) infringed its registered service mark, “Wag’n Rover Respond’R,” by running a “RedRover Responders” program. The Court found several factors leading to there being no likelihood of confusion. The commercial strength of Wag’n’s mark was weak, and there was neither evidence of any attempt by other businesses to plagiarize the mark nor any evidence that consumers associated the marks with Wag’n. The two marks were not identical in sight and meaning. Rover Respond’R and Redrover Responder were distinct in the structure and components of the words as well as the meaning of the words; and the logos of the two marks were distinct in size and color. The goods and services identified by the markers were not similar, and the products and services that bear the marks did not directly overlap. Wag’n used its mark only in connection with its emergency kits and the related membership service, while “Redrover Responders” was only used to denote its emergency response volunteers on t-shirts and in its brochure. Most importantly, the court could not find evidence of actual confusion by consumers, and held that Wag’n's concerns over hypothetical associations between the marks were unfounded and purely speculative. Therefore the court GRANTED summary judgment for UAN.