Ankole cows / cattles are found in Uganda and Rwanda. The Ankole cows / cattles are also referred to as the cattle of kings. As you visit Uganda and Rwanda, you will also come across magnificent scenery, wildlife, primates and birds. The most imposing creature among domesticated animals that are found in Africa and those are the long horned Ankole cattle.
Ankole cows are called the cattle of the kings because of their close ties and importance to the royalty of south western part of Uganda and Rwanda. Once you see these majestic cows you will understand the way they are referred to as the cattle of royalty.
Ankole cows in Uganda and Rwanda descended from the Ethiopian Sanga cattle that originated in Eurasia with a lineage that goes back for thousands of years.
Ankole cows survived the thrives living on meager pasture and not needing much water as a hardy breed of cattle. The size of their horns can exceed even more than 2.5 meters in terms of length and when you see a herd of Ankole cattle on your visit to Uganda you will be suprised by the sight of the length and size of Ankole cattle horns.
Ankole cows / cattle have longhorns and colorful skins. The long horns also protects the Ankole cattle from predators such as the most dangerous lions, leopards, hyenas where they form a tight circle and their horns that will face outwards towards the most dangerous predators that are found in this place.
Ankole cows of any colorations are called ibigarama and while the short cows that are not lean are also called in kuku which may also be a version of the Bantu word which is commonly used to mean chicken. In addition to this, visitors coming to Rwanda should take the inyambo ceremonial cows at the king’s palace museum.
In south western part of Uganda and Rwanda – cattle were royalty and also the pastoralists of that region saw their lives intertwined with their cows and their lives rotated around their cattle.
The Bahima people of Uganda divided the day into twenty periods & 19 of those daily periods have to do with their cattle related activities. The Ugandan and Rwandan pastoralist looked down on farmers, fisherman, and hunters. Only buffaloes and the lary Eland Antelopes were hunted most likely because they had some cattle related qualities and the diet of those who kept cattle in Uganda and Rwanda did not consist of meat. The blood tapped from the veins of cows which was combined with milk and consumed.
But again slaughtering a healthy cow was seen as a form of cannibalism. Infertile cows and extra bulls were the ones that were meant to be slaughtered for special occasions and part of slaughtered cows’ hides would be made into mats, drum covering and clothes. The dung of cows was used to plaster buildings and to create art on buildings.