The Geler Cardigans
Owned by Miss D.F. Wylie, Reabrook, Minsterley, Shrewsbury
Comments by contemporaries
Miss D. F. Wylie's Welsh Corgis are all of Cardigan type. It is her fixed conviction that the Cardigan type represents the old original Welsh Corgi and that the best and purest of that type spring from the Bronant district. Bronant is a little village in Cardiganshire, about seven miles from Aberystwyth, and in this remote and wild district Corgis have been bred for work for many years by generations of Cardiganshire farmers and cottagers, their principal use being that of driving cattle and the Welsh mountain ponies. It is from this district that Miss Wylie obtained her foundation stock, which she considers to be of the purest and oldest Cardigan type.
Miss Wylie commenced to breed and exhibit Welsh Corgis in 1928, and at the present moment her Kennel consists of a dozen adult specimens of the old Cardigan type and of several puppies bred this year. She is a real dog lover, and makes "pals" of her dogs, and anyone acquiring young stock from the "Geler" Kennel can be sure of getting a puppy in which intelligence and obedience are, as it were, inbred. Miss Wylie has done a lot of good work for the Welsh Corgi Association, especially as regards the compiling of the recently revised Standard of Points.
Geler Benita is a young black and tan bitch, just out of her puppyhood, and she has done some nice winning in puppy classes this year. As will be seen from her photograph, she is a rare-bodied bitch, with a very deep chest and a well defined waist. She is very strong and rather short in neck, and this shortness is a characteristic of the old mountain breed. The revised Standard says that the neck should be "muscular, well developed, strong and in proportion to the dog's build", though at one time a long neck was insisted upon by the Welsh Corgi Association.
Her litter sister, Geler Bronwen, has also done well in puppy classes. She scores slightly in head, muzzle, length of body and tail, which resembles a fox's brush. When photographed she was rather light in condition.
The attractively marked brindle and white dog, Geler Finley is a recent acquisition. He is full of old Cardiganshire blood, and much is expected of him as a stud dog. He has beautiful ears, and his eyes convey the correct impression of keen intelligence, whilst his forelegs, are short and slightly bowed and he possesses a deep brisket, a long and strong body and very sound hindquarters.
Geler Caressa is a beautiful blue merle bitch, now three years old, with good erect ears, a powerful muzzle, short forelegs, strong bone, a very deep brisket and well-sprung ribs. She did a great deal of winning as a puppy, and led the way in Open bitches at Abergavenny in 1932.
Caressa was BOB at Crufts in 1935, the first Crufts after the separation of the breeds. (Brenda Piears, 12.05.2020)
Another high-class bitch is Geler June, which went to reserve best of sex at Cardiff Championship Show this year.
Fronfelen Pixie is a very useful bitch, with the alert, intelligent expression which makes the Welsh Corgi so fascinating.
The above-mentioned six specimens represent the pick of the "Geler" Kennel, but Miss Wylie has bred four or five bitches this year, and has some promising young stock coming on. The main colours represented are black, brindle and blue merle, and most of the dogs have a white blaze, a white "shirt and collar" and white feet, whilst very often the tip of the tail is also white. Most of them excel in dense, weather-resisting coats. Their eyes, generally speaking, tone with the colours of their coats.
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W. Lloyd-Thomas (1934)
Miss Wylie in the matter of her dogs is a purist, tolerating none but those possessing in the highest degree the sterling and endearing qualities of the original Corgis. She has wisely taken as her standard the finest and purest of the magnificient ancient Bronant dogs, and thereby done much to preserve for us their type.
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Clifford D. Hubbard (The Cardiganshire Corgi, 1952).
Thelma Gray (The Welsh Corgi, 2nd edition 1939).
Miss D.F. Wylie ranks with the oldest pioneers in the breed, probably being the oldest lady breeder. Her "Geler" dogs are of a very even type, near to the original kind of Corgi of the Tregaron and Bronant hills in Cardiganshire, and many of whom were brindle and blue merle.
The black and white Y Brython (Bob Llwyd x Cassie) helped to lay the foundation for her "Geler" kennel by siring Ch. Geler Caressa and her litter brother Geler Coynant, born 30.08.1930, out of Geler Nell (Bob x Spot). G. Coynant sired Geler Cledwyn (out of Bit), and these three magnificient blue merles were undoubtedly the best of their colour ever seen (despite the fact that G. Cledwyn was mainly black and white, but with some merle markings). Coynant himself was unshown owing to an injury, but much resembled his lovely sister. Also Geler June (bred by Capt. M. Jones, by Bedu out of Teify II) was an attractive blue merle with tan points.
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Ken Linacre, December 2005
Miss Wylie was one of the first big Cardigan breeders: she registered her foundation bitch Geler Nell (born 26/1/1925) in 1928 and continued to register in large numbers up to May 1939. She registered a few during the war years and started off again in 1946. Her last registration was in June 1959 - the dog was Geler Peter Pan born in 1956. Miss Wylie was one of only a few pre-war breeders who consistently used an affix while the fashion with most of the breeders at the time was simply to find a good name.
It is said that Miss Wylie was a very wealthy lady but a recluse who never sold any puppies or let anybody use her dogs at stud.
Miss Wylie died in the mid-1970s.
Simon Parsons, February 2021:
This kennel was surely the breed's most wasted opportunity. Before the war Daisy Wylie amassed a collection of Cardigans, often of unusual bloodlines, and bred some super dogs including the first blue merle champion. She was a great publicist for the breed through her impressive advertisements, often using the literary talents of Mr Lloyd Thomas. Sadly she seems to have been reluctant to let her dogs be used or to sell to other breeders. So when she gradually retired from breeding and showing after the war, her lines almost died out. I think Geler Finley and his son Geler Garrath are the only Gelers to appear in subsequent pedigrees. Sadly the merle lines from Geler did disappear altogether. A lesson to everyone not to be over-protective of your bloodlines!