Knowledge Has a Beginning but No End.

~Geeta Iyengar


See what continuing education our staff have completed by looking for the
Bark Town Badges underneath each staff members bio!

Knowing Dogs Level 1 Badge.png

Knowing Dogs
Level 1

Staff member has completed and passed Level 1 of the Knowing Dogs training program.

Knowing Dogs Level 2 Badge.png

Knowing Dogs
Level 2

Staff member has completed and passed Level 2 of the Knowing Dogs training program.



Staff member has been trained how to properly and safely bathe and dry dogs at Bark Town USA.



Staff member has been taught how to properly perform CPR on small and large dogs by Bark Town USA.


Ear Cleaning

Staff member has been trained to properly and safely clean dogs' ears by Bark Town USA.



Staff member has been taught the fundamentals of enriched play and how to apply them to working with dogs.


Enrichment Design

Staff member has been trained to safely and creatively design enrichment activities, devices and games for the dogs at Bark Town USA.


Kennel Care

Staff has been trained to safely and properly sanitize, disinfect and clean to protect the health of every dog at Bark Town USA.


Nose Games

Introduce your team! Click here to add images, text and links, or connect data from your collection.



Staff member has been trained to safely supervise and manage multi-dog playgroups at Bark Town USA. 

World of Dogs.png

World of Dogs

Staff member participated in a field trip to a local Dog Show and learned about different dog breeds, dog sports and how to evaluate types of enrichment.

Meet the Bark Town Team

Enriching Lives One Paw at a Time


April Hargraves

Owner, Trainer, Groomer
Canine Enrichment Director


Ruth Bauer

 Lead Trainer, KPA Certified Trainer,

Canine Enrichment Supervisor

What's not to love! Everyday, I get to work with wonderful people, engage with amazing dogs and talk with the most caring pet parents. I have been lucky enough to turn my passion into an amazing career at Bark Town USA. My first dog was a black Lab named Radar. Currently, I have a yellow Lab named Kipling. Kipling and I run the gamut of activities, one minute we're cuddling on the couch, and the next we're out practicing a frisbee routine. By far, though, his all time favorite things are playing frisbee and swimming. I have never been without a dog in my life. Animals have always been a very important thing to me and I have always loved working with them. It took me a little while to realize what I wanted to do, but, eventually, I circled back around to animals. In college, I worked at a boarding kennel, until graduation, when I came to Bark Town. I graduated from Michigan State University in 2015, with a Bachelors in Animal Science. In 2018, I became a Karen Pryor Certified Training Partner, and, later that same year, opened my own dog training business, Canines Decoded, LLC. Outside of work, I am an avid volleyball player, love to read, play the piano, listen to music, bake, craft and, of course, train my dog!


Tanya Bigliardi

Certified Groomer

I have a wide range of experiences working in the pet industry and love Bark Town's clear professionalism and dedication to the well-being of the pets in their care.My first dog was named Crowley and he was a German Shepherd/Collie mix. I currently have 2 dogs, Rooster and Berlin. Rooster is a 8 year old English Coonhound and Berlin is a 2 year old mix breed. Rooster loves to sing along with the guitar and Berlin loves to snuggle her teddy bear! My dogs and I love spending time outdoors, whether it's hiking in the woods or lounging on the patio with a cup of coffee in the garden. Animals have always been my biggest passion in life and I have worked continuously in the professional pet industry since 2000. I have maintained positions in doggy daycares, kennel management, dog and horse training and now dog grooming. My journey has also included many amazing educational experiences, with certifications including: Professional Pet Groomer, Certified Canine Esthetician, Master Dog Trainer Certification, Parelli Level 2 Horsemanship and Pet CPR & First Aid. In my free time, I love seeking out the world and regional cuisine, dance and music. I am also an avid world traveler!


Oliva Pupa

Certified Groomer

I started working at Bark Town as an enrichment leader in the daycare program. Each day, I played with all different types of breeds of dogs, and saw first hand how unique each dog truly is. I have loved animals ever since I was little, and grew up with my golden Lab named Sheba. We had Sheba before I was even born so she was a huge part of my childhood. She was the most kind and loving dog a little girl could ask for. My favorite memory of her is how she would always let me paint her nails. I now have a Maltese named Snowflake, who is the perfect dog for me personally. She loves to cuddle, and lay around all day with me. She's 11 years old, but still loves to run around in the snow and go on long walks. Outside of work, I enjoy horseback riding, reading, swimming and spending time with my family. Now that I have completed my grooming certification program, I am so excited to begin my career grooming at Bark Town!

Image from iOS.jpg

Maddie Paquette

Canine Enrichment Leader

My first dog's name was KC and he was a Shepherd/ Shelti mix. I don't currently have any dogs, so working here is such a thrill! My last dog's name was Mali. She was a rescue dog that we got while living in South Carolina. We're not exactly sure what breed she was but she looked to have Lab and Dalmatian in her. My favorite thing to do with my old dogs was to go on long walks. I'm so excited to get to play with all sorts of dogs all day long! Out side of Bark Town, I enjoy hanging out with friends and family. I am also currently a freshman at Grand Valley, taking online classes.


Alex Ragon

Canine Enrichment Leader

My first dogs were Kody and Bailey, a German Shepherd/Lab mix and a Beagle. I currently have Ares, a Shepherd/Pitbull/Terrier mix and Macadelic, a Beta fish. I love playing outside with my dogs! Working at Bark Town, gives me the opportunity to work with and learn about lots of different breeds and I even get to play with them! Outside of Bark Town, I love being outdoors. I played hockey for about 12 years, including in college. I enjoy working, as well as, spending time with friends and family.


Madison Copeland

Canine Enrichment Leader

My first dog was named Belle and she was a Staffie/Lab mix. I currently don't have any dogs of my own but my parents have 3 Staffies, ranging in age from 2 to 15 years old. My favorite thing to do with my parent's dogs is lounging on the couch together and watching TV. I love working at Bark Town because it give me the opportunity to create lasting relationships with so many amazing dogs! Outside of Bark Town, I love to create all sorts of art and go fishing.


Evie Dean

Canine Enrichment Leader

My first dog was a Pug named Punkie. We still have Punkie, who is now 9 years old. We also have a 7 year old Jack Russell named Maddie. I also adopted a hedgehog named Axolotl. My favorite thing to do with Maddie is to cuddle with her. Punkie on the other hand snores really loudly but I love that about him! I love that working at Bark Town gives me the opportunity to spend time getting to know lots of dogs. Outside of Bark Town, I attend Howell High School and participate in choir, robotics, student leadership and am a link leader.


Kayla Brown

Social Media Specialist

I love our Bark Town dogs! I love working with each dog and being able to make a difference at Bark Town and watch it grow. I love all the staff and am so blessed to be able to work here! My first dog was a German Shepherd/Lab mix named Whitney. Now I have a 5 year old Dachshund named Maverick. He and I love to cuddle and take nice long walks together! He always loves it! Outside of Bark Town, I am a part of a PR firm at GVSU called Grand PR and have accomplished