It seems that Unilever is owner of the trademark POPSICLES for, well, ice cream. Canadian business Koolpets has a paw-licking good snack for puppies: BONESICLES. They have had it for over four years now, they claim.
Bonesicle is a vitamin supplement-enriched chicken-, beef-, or pork-flavored liquid that comes in the shape of a bone, a heart or a snowman. Dog owners just have to put it it in the freezer, only to wait for a hot summer day to present the cool snack to their pet.
Unilever is not amused and says it owns the whole “sicle”-franchise and is hoping to bring the pet food company to heel with a federal copyright infringement lawsuit. Unilever also seeks to compel Koolpets to abandon their trademark application and take down their Bonesicle Facebook page until the litigation is settled.
A lot may depend on whether the courts will deem the POPSICLE trademark to be valid. If, for instance, it is considered a generic name, Unilever will have a hard time stopping the ice cold dog treats.