"Cattle have a very important role in Zulu culture. They represent money, status and power. A man without cattle is not only poor in wealth, but poor in spirit. Like a family heirloom passed down from generation to generation, cattle connect the Zulu to his land and his heritage. If a man does not have cattle, he cannot make a sacrifice to honor his ancestors or to ask them to help him improve his fortunes. Cattle also play a central role in love and marriage. Like a dowry in Western culture, Zulus are required to give at least 11 head of cattle as the lobola to the father of his bride. Without cattle, a man not is allowed to marry his true love. Another sign that cattle are at the heart of Zulu culture is that they are kept in the center of the settlement protected by two walls and the huts of the entire community.
Increase the size of the herd gains a man great honor and respect. Many men leave their home villages to go to cities to earn money, so they can increase the size of their herd. To go away from his village, family and herd is difficult decision for a young man. You see, a Zulu will know each cow and bull in his herd like a good friend: its size, its colors, its horns, and its personality. When the young man goes away, he leaves a trusted younger boy to look after his herd. This is not a chore; it is an important responsibility for the young boy. And, if he does his duty well, he will be well regarded.
Cattle are a prized possession for the Zulu people."