The Trademark

PetSmart is a chain of popular pet stores specializing in selling pet supplies, services, and even small pets. It is a market leader in North America and is in direct competition with other big names like PetCo. Indirect competitors include Walmart, Amazon, and others.

In addition to supplying products like pet food, select stores offer additional services such as veterinary services, grooming, boarding, and daycare. Home Page

The Domain

The domain was registered in 1995 and will expire in 2022 unless it’s renewed beforehand. The trademark was registered in 1999 by attorney Diana Hawken on behalf of PetSmart, inc.

Company History

In the 1980s, Jim and Janice Dougherty came up with the idea of discount pet-food warehouses and, with the backing of Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation, incorporated under the name Pacific Coast Distributing in 1986. In 1987 they opened their first superstores in Phoenix, Arizona, trading as PetFood Warehouse, offering bulk discounts for large quantities of pet food, which was a relatively new concept.

In 1989 The corporation removed the Dougherty’s from their positions due to a lack of profitability, with them retained as consultants. Samuel J. Parker, a retail veteran, was hired as CEO in their place. One of Parkers’ first decisions was to change the name to PETsMART. The concept expanded rapidly from there, with pet grooming services being offered in some stores and departments for birds, fish, small pets added. In 1990 they expanded into vaccination services, with mobile vet clinics being introduced. In addition to this, stores were also designed to be more inviting.

By 1992 PETsMART had 50 stores and was turning over a profit for the first time. In-house grooming centers, veterinary clinics, and pet adoption centers began to be included in all stores to create a one-stop service for pet owners.

In July 1993, rapid expansion began – the company went public on NASDAQ under the ticket ”PETM”. It was this infusion of capital that allowed PETsMART to expand aggressively and also to begin acquiring competitors. In 1994 they opened their 100th store.

In 1994 PETsMART charities – now PetSmart charities – were founded. This is an independent nonprofit organization that aims to save the lives of homeless pets by partnering with animal shelters. PETsMART decided not to sell dogs and cats due to the high volume of animals euthanized every year.

Via PetSmart charities, it donates space inside its stores to local humane societies and animal shelters. PetSmart Charities also support spay/neuter services as a means to help communities solve the issue of overpopulation.

A deal signed with Banfield Pet Hospital put Veterinary clinics in every new PetSmart store built after 1995.

In 1995 PETsMART launched a mail-order catalog arm; in 1996, it had acquired the leading pet-products catalog business in North America and a significant equine products catalog business.

Parker retired as CEO in 1995, but his successor Mark Hansen resigned in 1997 due to heavy losses. Parker returned to revive the company as chairman and CEO and initiated a series of ”back to basics” initiatives to get the company back on track. After returning to profitability, he resigned again in 1998, handing the reins over to Phil Francis. In 1998 PETsMART opened its 500th store, and by year’s end, had 423 stores in the U.S., 93 stores in the U.K., and 18 in Canada.

In 1999, PETsMART’s united kingdom operations failed and were bought out by Pets At Home.

In 2001 the company laid out a three-year plan to expand in-store services and products and provide high-quality customer service. It began an extensive training program for its employees to help them identify customers’ needs and offer solutions in line with its new vision statement. A new ad campaign debuted, “All You Need for the Life of Your Pet.”

In 2004 the company launched Its PetPerks Loyalty card program, which offers promotional discounts and customizations to shoppers, allowing PETsMART to individually promote services and determine the effectiveness of each promotion and strongest customer brand loyalties increasing their marketing effectiveness.

In 2005 PETsMART rebranded itself PetSmart and embraced the concept of ”pet parents”, the trend of humanizing pets. It introduced a significant ad campaign designed for pet owners who treated their pets as children.

By 2008, PetSmart had 1000 stores across the United States and Canada.

In 2017, PetSmart acquired their competitor, Chewy, for $3.35 Billion. Chewy went public in 2019, and PetSmart used the proceeds from the IPO to pay down its substantial debts. By 2020, PetSmart had over 1600 stores, with more potentially being planned.

Other Domains & Trademarks

PetSmart owns several ex-competitors in addition to a wealth of trademark registrations; let’s take a look at some of the most well-known domains and trademarks that PetSmart has acquired or launched.

Check out our guide on domain names and trademarks.

The domain was registered in 2004; the filing date was in 2012, with the first use in e-commerce being recorded in the same year.

Chewy is a leading online pet retailer and was acquired by PetSmart in 2017 for $3.35 billion.

Pet Smart Charities Logo

In 1994 PetSmart Home Office Inc registered the Logo for PetSmart Charities – the Logo is still used today and is usually seen in pink and blue, though the colors are not a registered feature of this service mark.

PetSmart Pets Hotel

PetSmart Petshotel was first used in 2000 to describe PetSmarts dedicated boarding services; PetSmart Hotel offers daycare alongside overnight stays for pets, including cats and dogs. Ideal for owners going on holiday or otherwise needing to leave their pet unattended.

Pets Hotel services encompass healthy meals, a safe environment, playtime, and a temperature-controlled environment.PetSmart officially registered the trademark in 2005.

Anything for pets

One of PetSmart’s newest trademarks – filed with the trademark office in 2021 – is the slogan ”Anything for pets,” which has recently been used in a successful advertisement campaign depicting people looking after a variety of different pets from rats to lizards and dogs.

Healthy Pet Advisory Council

PetSmart created the Healthy Pet Advisory Council in partnership with veterinarians, researchers, and pet nutritionists. The council aims to develop complete nutrition and wellness solutions for pets, provide nutritional education and guidance to the PetSmart team, and help ”pet parents” make informed choices for their pets’ individual needs.

Trademark filing for this trademark took place in 2019.

PetSmart Scholarship Foundation Pursuing Educational Triumphs

This is an active trademark that was filed with the USPTO in 2020. Presumably, it is linked to their current scholarship scheme, under which students who embody the mission of PetSmart Charities can apply for a $50,000 scholarship towards their education in veterinarian studies.

Wrapping Up

PetSmart is a corporate giant in the world of pet care and, consequently, no stranger to trademark applications. PetSmart Home office, Inc has submitted hundreds of applications during their years in business.

PetSmart is an overall profitable company with a strong history, having generated billions of dollars in revenue over the years. In order to protect that revenue, it’s important that there are legal protections in place.

Copyright law gives trademark owners a vital framework to work within to protect their intellectual property. Still, you can only benefit from these critical legal protections by registering trademarks for your brand or business.

Xavier Morales, Esq.

About the Author:

Xavier Morales, Esq.

Mr. Morales founded this trademark law practice in January 2007 with the goal of providing intellectual property expertise to entrepreneurs and businesses around the country. Since then, he has filed more than 6,000 trademarks with the USPTO. You can learn more about Xavier here.

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