It’s National Pet Month 2015: Is There a Difference Between Pets and Cattle?


April is national pet month in the U.K.—a time to promote responsible ownership. But, do cattle count as pets?

I’m pretty sure you’ve heard the “Pets and Cattle” analogy before. But, do you know what the differences are between Pets and Cattle? Well, if you are unsure about the analogy, let me enlighten you.

Cloud computing is still in its infancy. So far, we’ve only unlocked a fraction of its potential. Yet, how to put cloud infrastructure to work is still lagging behind. Much of this is down to how IT professionals approach the cloud. In the past, IT professionals understood that servers or data centres limited the running of applications. Then, along came virtual machines.

Virtual machines were a revelation for this generation. They provided flexibility and portability that physical machines didn’t allow. Yet, the administration of the VMs was still modelled on the physical machine mentality. This mentality has severely limited potential cloud growth and development

This is where the Pets and Cattle analogy comes in:

 Pets are the traditional VMs.
Each pet has a name. They are expensive. You pay close attention to them for years. When they’re not well, you take them to the vet to help them get better.

 You treat Cattle differently.

You’ve got too many to name, so you give them numbers. You put them in a field and watch them from afar and you don’t expect them to live long. When they get sick, you shoot them. If your herd requires it, you replace anything you’ve killed.

So, what is this analogy saying to you? Well, it’s quite simple, really. In essence, it is saying that in order to get the most from your cloud infrastructure, you should be herding cattle and looking after fewer pets.

Is it time to make the Mooove?

What do you think about the Pets and Cattle analogy? Do you think it’s a bit more complicated than we make it out to be? Let us know, leave a comment below! :)