I've always read and heard animals and small children are more in tune with things like these. Their brains aren't yet taught to rationalize strange things and they aren't told not to believe. Also, I think that they are seen as less of a threat, so any other worldly being is more attracted to their kindness and innocence.
There are only two rules at my house: House rule #1. Cats rule. House rule #2. See rule #1.