There are two Lost Dogs in the fight. On July 18, lawyers from the Alexandria, Va.-based firm Driscoll & Seltzer wrote a cease and desist letter on behalf of their client Lost Dog Cafe to Shepherdstown, WV-based Garth Janssen, the owner of Lost Dog Coffee. The restaurant’s lawyers are claiming Janssen’s company is in violation of a common law trademark, as the restaurant company has been using the Lost Dog name since 1994.
In response, Janssen has issued a cease and desist request of his own, setting up a website to gain public support and finding it from at least 500 people who have already signed a petition backing the small, family-owned coffee shop. On the site, Janssen writes:
Lost Dog Coffee of Shepherdstown, WV is a local business that has served customers with great coffee for over fifteen years and been a cultural center for the town. Lost Dog Coffee has been recognized by the Washingtonian and other journals as being a place worth visiting. A pizza chain with a similar name, but different website domain, has decided to try and take Lost Dog’s good name and website.
We want the chain to cease and desist from hurting the good name, reputation and online presence of Lost Dog Coffee. To beat up on a local company when no harm is being done is outrageous.