Royal Oak student’s app looks to find treats for furry friends

By: Mike Koury | Royal Oak Review | Published July 25, 2023

 Sarah Milligan was inspired to make Biscuit Beacon from taking her dog, Percy, out on walks.

Sarah Milligan was inspired to make Biscuit Beacon from taking her dog, Percy, out on walks.

Photo provided by Sarah Milligan


ROYAL OAK — A Royal Oak student’s creation has made taking your dog on a walk a bit more rewarding.

Last year, Royal Oak High School student Sarah Milligan participated in a competition from Modak Makers for teen entrepreneurs. Milligan decided to create an app called “Biscuit Beacon,” which is for dog owners to find treat jars and water bowls for their companions while they’re out on walks.

Milligan, 16, came up with the idea while out on walks with her dog, Percy. She said she would always see treat jars and water bowls in her neighborhood and in other cities she visited, and she wanted to create an app for people to locate them.

“Anyone can add a treat jar or water bowl to the map, and then everyone else can see it there,” she said. “Every treat jar and water bowl that’s on the map — we call them beacons — people can input different information about them. So, like, how full the water or the treat jar is, if it’s clean and other things that might be useful to dog owners in the area.”

Milligan’s participation in the competition was able to net $3,500 in funding after placing second in multiple competitive rounds. After releasing an early version of the app last year, a full version was released this past spring. She developed the app with the team she hired, Anikate De and Prastab Ghimire.

Outside the app, Milligan, who will be heading into her junior year at Royal Oak High School, participates on the school’s robotics team and teaches the computer programming language Java there as well.

Milligan’s mother, Orit, has seen her daughter’s interest in technology and the development of the app grow over the years and thinks what she’s been able to do has been incredible.

“She has many other ideas and is always driving to learn more, whether it’s independently studying for an AP Computer Science exam, or having ideas that could one day make a difference even on global warming. So it’s been really great to watch her follow her passions,” she said.

Besides its beta users, Milligan said the app recently passed 100 users and she’s seen a growth trend moving upward.

“What I view as success in terms of this whole venture throughout this past year, I’ve learned so much, like way more than I thought I would when I started working on this app, and that, to me, is a great success,” she said.

For more information on Milligan’s app, visit