The short story "The Old Man at the Bridge" by Ernest Hemingway takes place in the Ebro Valley in Spain during the Spanish Civil War. The narrator, whose mission is to scout for enemy troops, encounters a tired old man near a pontoon bridge over the Ebro River and strikes up a conversation with him.
The old man informs the narrator that his native town is San Carlos. He has just come from there. He was the last to leave because he was taking care of animals: a cat, two goats, and four pairs of pigeons. The narrator urges the old man to go up the road and get on a truck bound for Barcelona, where he would be safe. However, the old man is too tired to move, and besides, he is very concerned about the animals he has left behind. By the end of the story, it is unclear whether the old man will be able to get out of the way of danger before the enemy troops arrive.
As for the old man's occupation, it is not stated in the story. The narrator says that he does not look like a shepherd or a herdsman. The few animals he mentions are probably just personal pets. The old man gives his age as seventy-six, so it's possible he has no occupation. He is most likely too old to work and simply takes care of himself and his animals. He says he has no family, so the animals are the only living things he has to be concerned about.