Mice in parents' house
I talked with my mother yesterday (as I do every Sunday), and I happened to ask her how many mice there were at her house, since she told me that coyotes had killed/eaten all of the cats that she had. She lives in the country more than half a mile from the nearest neighbor, which is now my nephew. The house was built in 1932 or 1934 by my grandfather, without a drawn plan, and so it is a bit eccentric but also full of holes so that it is easy for mice to get it. All of the windows leak as well.
Anyway, she told me that she has been putting out traps for the mice and sometimes catches six in one day. I told her she needs to get an indoor cat (even though my sister, brother, and I are all allergic), and she agreed to that, but then I also called my sister and asked her if she could arrange for an exterminator to go to the house to get rid of the mice once and for all. I told her that I would pay for it, but my sister said SHE wanted to pay for it, and so I did not argue, since she is in a much better position to afford it than I am.
Today I emailed my sister for an update, and she told me that DM refuses to allow an exterminator to go to the house. She thinks the mouse population is under control because of the traps, but I know better. Her health is not great at this point, as she needs open heart surgery to replace a valve (or something), and DF has Parkinsons and is getting progressively worse. DM thinks the surgery would disable her too long and that she would not be able to take care of DF during her recovery, which I am sure is true. She also told my sister that she did not want to live to be 97 anyway, and so she may have lost some of her will to live. That is not the case with DF, as he wants to live to be 100 so that he can torture people that much longer.
Are there any suggestions for controlling the mouse population that would not involve an exterminator? I am thinking that I might take a plug-in device to keep mice away, but there is already one of those in the kitchen, and it seems to make no difference.