Croydon’s canine champion has been snubbed by the London 2012 committee, which said the wonderdog could not carry the Olympic torch.

Resident’s hoping to nominate Hamish McFee to carry the torch through the borough next June have been told they are barking up the wrong tree by Olympic officials.

The only animals allowed near the sacred flame are guide dogs, according to London 2012 Organising Committee (Locog), although in the past the torch has been carried by a dog sled and a man on a camel.

The public are being invited to nominate 8,000 torchbearers for the flame’s tour around the UK, ahead of the Olympic Games in July. It is hoped that local heroes and community champions across the country will bear the flame.

But Hamish McFee, who won last year’s community champion award, is not allowed to be one of them. The 11-year-old West Highland terrier has devoted his dog days to helping others – working as a Pets as Therapy (Pat) dog, teaching children to cross the road safely and helping others overcome their fear of dogs.

He won at last year’s Croydon Champions awards and was also named 2010 Pat dog of the year at the Crufts dog show. The little hero, owned by Barry and Margaret Crossby from Addiscombe, was honoured for all his hard work with patients in the physiotherapy and stroke units at Mayday Hospital, where he has worked with the elderly and people in comas.

A London 2012 spokeswoman said: “From what we’ve heard, Hamish contributes to life in Croydon, but we want people with stories of personal achievement or contribution to the community to be celebrated. With limited places, we are comfortable inspiring stories of human endeavour should be our focus.”

Councillor Sara Bashford, cabinet member for customer services, culture and sport, said: “I’m sure we will all be able to look on our torchbearers with pride.

Anyone wanting to make a nomination visit london2012. com/olympictorchrelay.