I decided to start a separate thread so as not to keep her in "C.W.D. Gaping" forever.
Perp (the Unknown Perpetrator) is a Chinese Water Dragon I was given by a friend. When my friend moved into her new house, she found this little lizard in a 10 gallon tank on the floor of her living room. She brought it to me, and said, "Here, this is for you." This dragon had eyes completely crusted shut, no substrate save coconut husk in a yogurt cup (her hide), no real water (there was a thick sludge in a 3" diameter water dish), nothing to climb on, and she was motionless other than the occasional breath. I took her to the vet, and she was cleared of parasites, but her prognosis was poor.
She couldn't eat (because she couldn't see), so she started with pedialyte soaks and some sort of "nutrient slurry" the vet gave me. The vet had intended to show me how to pry open a Chinese Water Dragon's jaw to syringe feed the "slurry", but when he touched her nose, she opened her mouth, which he took as a poor sign, but said it would be easy to feed her that way. I started cleaning her eyes with eyedrops on a daily basis, and after several days (can't recall how many), she opened her eye ever-so-slightly and coconut husk came through her eyelids. Very carefully, with some finetip tweezers, I pulled out the fibers I could see (obviously I did not dig, just removed the fibers sticking out past her eye), then flushed the eye again. It took almost 2 weeks from that point before she would readily keep one eye open, and at that point, I tried feeding her crickets, which she absolutely could not catch, so I ripped the back legs off, and she had a snack. It was a few more days before both eyes were clear, and she still could not catch crickets. The vet said her eyes may have been permanently damaged, and she may just not be able to see.
A few weeks ago she began gaping, but was cleared by the vet. After another week or so, I took her to a different vet who gave her antibiotics, and I soon discovered that it is not at all normal to easily give a Chinese Water Dragon something from a syringe. She was NOT happy! It took three days to discover the easiest way to give her the meds, and on day 14/15, she bit me. Fortunately, she is small, and I don't think she bit me as hard as she could. That was Thursday. On Saturday my niece put crickets in her enclosure (about 10), and much to my surprise she caught them. Over a few hours, she caught all of them.
I've had her for roughly 3 months, and her estimated age is between 4-5 months, though she's small for her proposed age. At her last vet visit, she weighed 18 grams (that was June 22nd), and as of yesterday, she weighed 24 grams. She has also grown about an inch in body length (about 4"), but lost roughly 3 inches off of her tail due to necrosis. She is very active now, and not at all the same dragon she was when she was first dropped off with me. The vet said it can sometimes take up to 2.5 years for a dragon to be full grown when it is starved as a juvie, and also said he wouldn't be surprised if she was permanently stunted. As of now, I have no idea of her actual gender (hence, Unknown Perpetrator), and it may take quite a bit longer than usual to be able to tell for sure.
I'm surprised how much I like her, because I refused to get one for a long time. They seemed like lots of trouble and just a small version of an iguana. Well I can say, she has one heck of a personality, and she has a place with me for a long while to come.
I do not have a camera right now (hopefully will soon), but here are some older pictures:
This was taken after her first eye was able to open (April 26th)
And this is her on June 19th, the day before I broke my camera