And the men [are] shepherds
That was their occupation and employment, by which they got their livelihood. Joseph was not ashamed of the business his father and brethren followed, even though mean; and besides, such men were an abomination to the Egyptians: this he thought proper to tell Pharaoh, lest he should think of putting them into some offices of the court or army, which would expose them to the envy of the Egyptians, and might endanger the corruption of their religion and manners, as well as be the means of separating them one from another, which he was careful to guard against, as Josephus F2 the historian suggests:
for their trade hath been to feed cattle;
this was what they were brought up to from their youth, and were always employed in, and for which only they were fit:
and they have brought their flocks and their herds, and all that they
in order to carry on the same business, and lead the same course of life.
F2 Ut supra. (Antiqu. l. 2. c. 7. sect. 5.)