A San Marcos veterinarian facing weapons and substance abuse charges has had his license to practice suspended by the California Veterinary Medical Board (VMB).
Dr. Brian J. Hosking, a veterinarian at San Marcos Animal Medical Center on Rancho Santa Fe, had his license suspended on May 4 after it was determined he was unfit to practice because of drug use and a mental health condition, according to court documents. The hospital was also shut down.
"I can't believe this," Irene Wilkinson said. "Oh, my. This is a terrible turn of events. He's done wonders for my animals I just can't believe it.
The petition to suspend Hosking's license was brought against him by the board on December 6, 2017. It was not clear what prompted the VMB to call for the review.
In the review, a psychologist said Hosking posed an immediate danger to his patients and the public if he continued practicing.
NBC 7 learned two months before the petition was filed, Hosking was arrested for being under the influence of a controlled substance. Two weeks later, he was arrested for possessing a rifle and ammunition while being prohibited from doing so.
"You didn't think of him as someone who could be addicted to alcohol or addicted to benzos, he just was into the animals, really into the animals," former customer Desiree Caldwell said.
In petition documents, the VMB said Hosking's license was placed on probation in 2000 after a psychologist determined he suffered from chronic alcoholism.
The psychologist told the board Hosking admitted to eight DUI convictions, that there was evidence of Oxazepam abuse and that he had a history of paranoia, delusions and hallucinations, which could have been a result of drug or alcohol abuse.
"He came across a little different to people to me, slightly odd, but when it came to my animal it was like he was feeling whatever my pet was feeling, very sympathetic to my dog," Caldwell said.
Similarly, the psychologist evaluation ordered in 2017 determined Hosking was impaired by a mental illness that could affect his competency.
Hosking's attorney told NBC 7 in a written statement, "for many years now clients have had the highest praise for the compassionate, kind and excellent care Dr. Hosking provided to their pets. the doctor's patients have always been in excellent care."
Hosking is expected to appear in San Diego County court in late May.